In soccer, passing the ball can increase your speed of traversing the length of the field by two to three hundred percent over dribbling.
The Mortgage Industry Faces Many Challenges That Prevent the Proverbial Ball From Being Passed.
Unfortunately, this inconveniences and limits everyone on the home buying “team.” Let’s delve into a real life example of a recent home buying experience that took place in Omaha, Nebraska. For privacy reasons, the buyer’s name was changed to Josh Smith.
Josh Smith recently went through the pre-approval and contract stage as a homebuyer. Even this early in the game, several problems surfaced:
1) Mortgage Data Redundancy
Different entities such as the realtor, lender and loan officer gave Josh many of the same documents to sign. To keep with the soccer analogy, these entities are not passing the same document to each other; they are dribbling several different balls on the field. His lender also forgot to send Josh all the forms needed for his mortgage and didn’t have the right address on a few others, so Josh had to sign everything again.
2) Weak Communication Throughout Loan Process
Josh wrote a good faith deposit check for $3,000, but when the loan paperwork summary came in the mail, his check wasn’t recognized on the estimated closing costs. No one explained to him that the funds needed to clear. This made Josh nervous, “I’m just waiting to hear back. I don’t know if the lenders have received my funds yet, I don’t know where they’re at in the actual loan process.” In this manner, the mortgage industry “team” isn’t passing information correctly.
3) Failure to Utilize Technology Resources
There were many times when Josh was asked to meet in person when virtual communication would have been much more convenient and passed the ball more effectively. “When I wanted to make the offer on the house, I had to go drive over to the real estate agent’s office on a Saturday, let her unlock the door and let me in, and draw up the offer.” Another example of this is when Josh’s home inspector hauled a printer to the house to print a hard copy report. “Why does he have to do that?” Josh asked. “If there’s a tablet or mobile device why can’t there be a transfer there?”
4) Mortgage Data Security Risk
Josh signed the loan papers, scanned them and emailed them back. After doing so, he realized he’d just sent all his personal information through unencrypted email. He admitted that it was his fault, but that it was also “the process that was laid out in front of me.” Many first time homebuyers might not even realize this danger even though it leaves openings for a team of fraudsters to “score.”
These issues are regrettably normal, even expected. Compared to other peoples’ home buying experiences, it might even be considered smooth. “I’ve got a veteran real estate agent who has gone through hundreds of closings,” Josh said. “My process is probably at the top tier of efficiency. So . . . throw in a forgetful home inspector, or a brand new lending agent. Now you’ve got a weak link in the chain and you’re only as strong as your weakest link.”
Why does buying a home have to be this way? Is it possible for secured personal data, efficient processes and straightforward communication to be considered normal in the mortgage industry?
ATS Secured believes that it can. In the next blog in this series, I will detail how empowering each entity to pass the proverbial ball can secure these ideals.