DS News

DS News August 2022

DSNews delivers stories, ideas, links, companies, people, events, and videos impacting the mortgage default servicing industry.

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Page 51 of 99

50 the phone, but it is the hope that additional servicer options are key in opening the lines of communication. "I will say that there's more educational avenues, and luckily enough, in our modification and our Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF) space, we've had tenured staff," Bolden noted. "We've been able to transition from our prior hardest hit funds over to HAFs. At PennyMac, we have a proprietary system that alerts everyone in the company that there's an active HAF on file. What we are doing is when we send out a decline letter, as opposed just putting a blurb on a decline letter that says, 'you also may qualify for this,' we are sending out a separate HAF flyer. at is driving more engagement back as well. We just began that recently, so it's hard to gauge what the market penetration rate is on that, but we've certainly seen an increase in responsiveness." ANGELA HURST, EVP/Chief Administrative Officer for RES.NET RIDA SHARAF, Chief Strategy Officer for USRES Real estate software provider RES.NET offers a technology suite for servicers, investors, lenders, and hedge funds. Angela Hurst serves as EVP and Chief Administrative Officer for RES.NET, while Rida Sharaf is currently the Chief Strategy Officer for USRES, a provider of appraisals, BPOs, rental analysis, and REO disposition services. "With each wave, our challenges have also gone through phases, each characterized by different needs and requirements," said Hurst of the hurdles faced by her firm over the past two years. "e impact on our vendor partners and customers varies across the nation, and predicting them has been challenging. We focus a tremendous amount on our customers' operational needs, because each of them has unique challenges, and we at RES.NET have adapted to the fluid changes by focusing on their needs." As we focus on the future, learning from these experiences will only build a stronger and better foundation in handling crisis situations moving forward. "What happened in 2020 and referencing 'new normals' should be behind us, and as an industry, for the collective good, we are transitioning toward the 'next normal,'" Sharaf noted. "Having learned from the challenges experienced, we can build on this experience and prepare for future disruptions." JASON KWASNY, EVP Servicing, The Money Source Jason Kwasny serves as EVP of Servicing for e Money Source (TMS), a full-scope mortgage servicer, servicing loans it owns through previous origination or through purchase acquisition, as well as subservicing loans for over 60 clients through the TMS brand and private labeling servicing (PLS). TMS' current portfolio stands at 400,000 loans serviced, with more than half of those loans being subserviced for its clients. "e biggest challenge that TMS has been faced with recently is all the movement from our clients' portfolios," Kwasny noted. "In 2020-2021, there was basically only inflow of new originations. In today's environment, many of our clients have been challenged in consistently providing new flow through new originations and have been forced to sell MSRs to free up liquidity. While we continue to see consistent transfers in from new client partnerships, there has also been a heavy mix of deboards to other servicers due to MSR sales. We have responded by strengthening our loan transfers team with high-quality and experienced personnel while enhancing our processes and procedures so that we can provide a seamless transfer experience for customers. Even though these customers are leaving TMS, not by choice, we are committed to still delivering a leading customer experience through proactive communication and ensuring that all back- end data is accurate and timely provided to the new servicers." Despite the challenges faced by Kwasny and the TMS team, continued partnerships with federal and regulatory bodies remain paramount to both customer and servicer success moving forward. "What lies ahead at a macro level for the industry is anyone's guess, but it is almost certain we will see a prolonged slowdown in new originations, and a contraction and consolidation in both the originations and servicing spaces," Kwasny said. "We also know that coming off COVID-19, at a time when many homeowners struggled with making on- time payments due to COVID-19 impacts, there is strict scrutiny from regulators as they look to make sure customers were treated fairly and offered the protections afforded to them under the CARES Act and related agency guidance. Regulators such as the CFPB and their state counterparts are digging in deep in the name of consumer protection. We can expect to see greater scrutiny from our regulators, more enforcement actions, and a renewed focus on compliance, much like we did after the last financial crisis." CHRIS LEWIS, Director of Enterprise Solutions, DocMagic Inc. Chris Lewis, as Director of Enterprise Solutions for DocMagic, focuses on helping lending organizations of all types digitize their mortgage origination, closing, secondary, and servicing processes when it comes to going "e." DocMagic is a provider of mortgage-based compliance, document generation and mortgage digitization solutions, including eSign, eDelivery, eNotary (RON), eNote, and eVault solutions. "With the industry truly going digital and eNotes being leveraged on a wider scale, servicers must have an eVault solution to service those notes registered electronically with MERS. is is where DocMagic is having a lot of success," Lewis said. "e bigger challenge for servicers to overcome relates to the changes in operational workflow when using eNotes. e eNote is much more efficient but has a completely new workflow as compared with the paper note. Custodial practices will change, and the large-scale physical shipping, loading, and management of paper notes will be eliminated. Since excising paper note management process doesn't correlate over to the new eNote digital workflow, for the largest servicers, this new workflow can take some time to implement at scale. However, once completed, the ROI and risk mitigation effects are substantial. Cover Story By: Eric C. Peck

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