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16 | TH E M R EP O RT COVER STORY A nticipating what's to come is always a tricky business. 2017 was a year defined by unpredictability, with the housing and mortgage industry facing technolog- ical updates, policy changes, demographic shifts, and a slew of natural disasters. Now, 2018 offers a clean slate and a sense of optimism as the indus- try continues to grow and learn. This new year will see the industry now knowing a bit more of what to expect from the now- established presidential admin- istration, but still with plenty of questions about what course the government will chart in 2018. Both natural disasters and digital threats will almost certainly con- tinue to provide challenges, but emerging technological advance- ments will also provide enormous opportunity for those who can evolve their processes and best incorporate them. But without a Magic 8-Ball to provide all the answers, the best way to predict what 2018 has in store is to talk to the people who've been in the trenches during the twists and turns of 2017. With that in mind, MReport spoke to a cross-section of leading industry experts whose day-to- day duties demand that they try and anticipate the next challenge, the next opportunity, and the next unexpected curveball. Leveraging Technology T he best way to build a bet- ter future is to understand the past. While the challenges of 2017 won't be left behind, it is how the industry responds that is key. One trend many indus- try experts agree on is that the expansion of digital tools will be crucial for anyone hoping to remain competitive. "2017 provided for many good challenges in bringing more and more automation and technology to an industry that desperately needs it," said Mike Lyon, EVP at Nexsys Technologies. Using digital tools as a means to enhance consumer experience through workflow may become the primary focus for many lend - ers in 2018. As in many cases, efficiency will be key. "Lenders are going to have to be more efficient—if the purchase business takes more effort, you have to get more efficient in the business," said Jonathan Corr, President and CEO of Ellie Mae. "Technology can help address this challenge by helping lenders close loans faster, close more loans, and reduce the cost to originate, all while operating with the compli - ance necessary in today's world." Jeff Sandman, Co-Founder of Pendo, added, "The adoption of technology has reduced redun- dancies, errors, and simplified the process while producing an appraisal in less time and with better accuracy." As the industry moves into 2018, there are also technology so - lutions that lenders can implement to drive costs out of the mortgage process and deliver greater trans- parency and control for proof of compliance. According to Tim Anderson, Director of eServices at DocMagic, "What was once referred to as eMortgages has now been renamed to the Digital Mortgage process to take time, paper, and risk out of the entire process and store critical data and docs to ensure compli - ance of the process all the way from initial loan application to closing and investor delivery." There will inevitably be speed bumps along the way, of course. While Stanley Street, President of Street Resource Group, suggests the industry will see an acceler- ated use of eNotes in 2018, He says much depends on adoption amongst the secondary market. "Major lenders are actively pur - suing completely digital technol- ogy, and warehouse lenders have become increasingly comfortable financing digital-mortgage prod- ucts," said Street. "Our hope is that increase demand for eNotes next year will help move addi- tional aggregators and institutional non-GSE investors off the fence." Anticipating Tomorrow The last year has been one of transition in the housing and mortgage industry, as 2017 comes to a close, we can't help but ask, "What's next?" By Nicole Casperson Our hope is that increase demand for eNotes next year will help move additional aggregators and institu-

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