MReport February 2018

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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26 | TH E M R EP O RT FEATURE I f you ask top-performing salespeople whether they'd rather do paperwork or sell loans, there's no question how most would answer. Great salespeople don't wait around for borrowers—they go out and find them by constantly marketing, calling leads, and touching base with referral sources. The truth, however, is that paperwork is just as important as selling. While you can't have a business if you don't sell, you won't have a business if you don't manage expenses, as well as license requirements, business disclosures, insurance, and the necessary check boxes to remain compliant and keep you out of trouble. Of course, salespeople don't like to pull their eyes off the sale. So, they put it off these neces- sary tasks until later or until they get a warning or even a fine. But what if they don't have to think about it as much? The fact is today's evolving customer relationship manage- ment (CRM) technology enables mortgage salespeople to feed the sales pipeline and stay compliant with the requirements of doing business. The only trouble is many lenders aren't leveraging the right technologies, nor do they understand how important it is to use them to create a compliant contact strategy, as well as lower costs and sell more loans. From 0 to 60: How to Integrate Compliance and Sales T o stay compliant, a lender's sales and marketing processes must operate in a structured environment that assures them of meeting Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and other lending regulations. Their processes should also meet all American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) Service Organization Control (SOC) standards for se - curity, confidentiality, and protec- tion of data. At any time, a lender could be facing an audit, which is why clear internal procedures must be in place to prepare for that possibility. How do sales fit into all this? For one, lenders are responsible for ensuring individual loan officers are operating within regulatory lending compliance standards. Thankfully, today's CRM technology can help ensure compliance with regulations governing the sales and marketing of mortgages, as well as maintain compliance during the loan pro - cess itself. For example, the average mortgage transaction requires at least four different disclosures that require 34 separate signatures and where the borrower must provide 29 pages of documentation. Surprisingly, this is still a manual task for many lenders, although automation can streamline the process. Today, lenders can access an online push-button system that sends out correct disclosures to the customer in real-time, allow - ing the loan officer to complete the application and get the loan into processing faster. This also expedites the appraisal process, as you can't order an appraisal until the borrower has acknowledged their intent to proceed via these disclosures. Today's CRM software can also help loan officers find appropriate loan products for individual cus - tomers, which is also required by mortgage regulations. To comply, lenders must provide consumers with all the information necessary for them to make an educated decision regarding whether a fi - nancial product or service is right for their needs. For example, if a lender offers a lower rate on a cer- tain type of loan and markets to a general audience, the lender must inform borrowers of the require- ments to get approved for that loan—and not in small font on the back of a letter, but clearly, up front, where the borrower can't miss it. CRM technologies can automate all these processes. Staying in the Driver's Seat: Maintaining Control in All Stages of the Loan Process C RM software can update the correct pricing and fee infor- mation during underwriting and adjust the Closing Statement when it's integrated with a lender's loan origination software (LOS) system and leveraged throughout the loan process. While automating the disclosure process is a huge time saver, it's important that the loan officer can walk the customer through the disclosure process on - line if necessary. That brings us to another key factor for successfully instilling compliance in the sales process—control. Despite increasing automa - tion in the mortgage process—or perhaps because of it—control is more important to lenders than ever. For example, mortgage borrowers today can sign in to a lender's website, fill out a few Life in the Fast Lane Today's CRM technology is taking the risk out of high-speed sales in the face of tougher regulatory requirements. By Josh Friend

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