DS News

DS News December 2022

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

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Page 55 of 99

54 History has proven that times of turmoil are cauldrons for revolutionary thinking. It's during the tough times, when the world as we once knew it shifts and our daily business slows, that people begin to search in earnest for a better way to do things. Certainly, this lesson could be applied to the mortgage space, which has suffered in the post- COVID-19 era of soaring interest rates. Lenders have spent the past year navigating a choppy market, trying to figure out how to effectively scale back from the pandemic boom, and it's left them worse for the wear. While many of my colleagues may lament the tough times, I embrace them because I see opportunity in the ashes. I know that adversity inspires innovation, and I know that the mortgage market desperately needs some of that right now. For far too long, consumers have come second to the bottom line. But I believe that the industry can leverage technology to help more homeowners and enhance their profits. It comes down to using data and analytics to not only optimize the lending process, but also bring about real societal change. Here's how I think we can achieve this impressive double whammy. 1. OPTIMIZE YOUR TAX ANALYTICS Lenders/servicers can use data and analytics to assist homeowners in the review and analysis of their property taxes. For instance, governments and municipalities offer various property tax credits for the benefit of homeowners, like veterans or those over the age of 55, but most lenders do not cull their portfolios to ensure that their customers are receiving the benefits they are entitled to that could save thousands of dollars. Similar data analysis could be used to determine what borrowers in a lender/servicer's portfolio have homes that have been under- assessed, which could affect a borrower's ability to pay down the road and help lender/servicers get ahead of a potentially damaging situation. Or, it could be used to identify properties that have been over-assessed, meaning the borrower is paying more in taxes than they should and will therefore have less money available to pay their mortgage. Applying these types of analytics to a portfolio can benefit the borrower by identifying meaningful savings, as well as the lender/ servicer, who could use the information to take extra steps to ensure their borrowers' ability to repay. In effect, lender/servicers that commit to a property tax analysis are effectively reducing the cost of homeownership for their borrowers. 2. VALIDATE YOUR APPRAISALS To put it simply: the mortgage industry needs better methods to ensure the fast, accurate, and unbiased delivery of appraisals. Not only do appraisals drag out the loan process, but the presence of bias has had serious societal consequences. It's time for this industry to recognize the problem and instigate real change. Again, the answer lies with data and analytics. Using desktop appraisal review products that aggregate and analyze By: Jim Albertelli OPPORTUNITY AMID ADVERSITY Here are four ways we can collectively drive innovation and change during these leaner times. Feature

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