Featured Articles

When Albert Einstein said, “Information is not knowledge,” he could have been talking about the mortgage quality control (QC) process. As the COO of a leading QC technology provider, I absolutely applaud the industry for its increased use of QC technology. That said, there are still a lot of lenders and servicers who have access to a huge amount of valuable information, but aren’t turning it into knowledge and leveraging it to its full capacity.
 
I’m not criticizing. Sometimes when you’re working with a great technology, it’s easy to get caught up in all the things that the software does and I’ll tell you—particularly because our system is so configurable and flexible—that can be an awful lot of power. While it’s great to have a technology this powerful, the QC leaders need to maintain a proactive stance on how they are mining their QC data to efficiently and methodically identify valuable defect data.
 
With the right technology and a little bit of analytics, you can attain the knowledge to make proactive choices that can lead to some very cost-saving measures. Chances are, assuming you have a formal QC process, you have a lot of information you’ve gathered in the pre-funding QC process that can be leveraged in the post-closing world and vice versa. Let me explain how.
 
As basic as this may sound, the first step to creating a proactive QC program is simply making the decision to establish a program. Meaning, don’t start evaluating data haphazardly. To reap the maximum benefit, you need to make a decision to collect and analyze specific data on an ongoing basis. You need to make a commitment to a continued effort. 
 
Once you’ve made that decision and passed the word to your staff, you need to start collecting and reviewing your mortgage QC data. If you’re using a manual process, for example, one that uses an Excel spreadsheet, this is going to be a bit more difficult than if you’re using a QC technology solution. But whatever the case, you need to understand the types of defects that are occurring in your manufacturing process. If you haven’t started tracking that information, start tracking it now. Once you’re successfully tracking these defects you will quickly begin to see patterns emerging that will help guide you down a critical path. As an example, you will begin to see the frequency with which certain defects are occurring, and with each of these defects, an assigned severity. It’s important to have a clear understanding of this part to create the most efficient plan for prioritization and corrective action.
 
If a defect with a minor severity occurred just once in the last few months, you probably won’t need to impose immediate corrective action. This would not appear to be a problem area of your manufacturing process. The if-then of identifying defects and imposing correcting action is a critical area of the process. Often, when defects are identified, the line of business will correct the noted defect at a loan level, but fail to address the defect at the process level. The immediate goal is to catch the mistake, fix the mistake, then move on. Ideally, what you want to do is keep these mistakes from occurring in the first place. For example, if the Final Loan Estimate and/or Closing Disclosure was not in the file—which is likely, as this was the number one TRID-related defect in 2016, according to research released in ARMCO’s most recent QC Trends Report—you need to make sure that you put controls in place that assure that someone double checks that these documents are in the file prior to funding. When you start this process, you’re looking for the defects that occur with frequency and that have the highest severity levels. If you’re like most lenders, there will be several that rise to the top of the pile.
 
Once you have identified patterns in your defect data, you need to begin the process of creating corrective action plans. Hopefully you’re using a QC technology that includes a corrective action planning module. A corrective action planning module will allow the QC team to identify the root cause of your defects, provide seamless interaction with the business units, track the multiple associated tasks that are required of the business units, produce custom reports and include re-testing to assure the corrective action has in fact fixed the problem. 
 
Your action plan should identify key issues and their solutions. You’ll need to make sure that reports are generated on a regular basis. Here’s a tip: if you can make those reports easy to read and easily digestible, it’s more likely that your action plan will succeed. Make it easy and intuitive for the business team to keep the program going. The more time and effort it takes to identify areas of weakness, the less likely the program will be successful. Again, it’s great if your technology does this for you.
 
Also, make sure you determine the specific person or department that will take the corrective action, monitor their progress and be sure to set a specific date as to when you expect to start seeing improvements. My recommendation is to include a firm due date and use this date as your starting point for re-checking corrected items, and make it a ritual.
 
Once you start putting your program together, you may feel a bit overwhelmed with information, especially if you’ve never initiated a program like this before. One of the tricks to organizing your data is to quantify the cost of your defects. That will help you prioritize. Our industry has always been laden with rules ranging from best practice internal guidelines to federal regulations. That means we need to follow a protocol or there could be consequences. Financial ones, and dire ones at that.
 
It seems that every week we hear about organizations fined by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) for a wide range of violations. Just this year, we’ve heard of fines against mortgage companies ranging from the low millions ($1 million to $4 million) to nearly $30 million. That’s just this year. No one seems to be exempt. Small lenders, large lenders, servicers, even the credit bureaus.
 
If you are one of the lucky ones that have not yet been through a CFPB audit, I’d suggest implementing a process to monitor the CFPB’s Web site to identify the defects that have led to enforcement actions and warning letters. Armed with this information, start crunching the numbers. Know how much those types of defects can—or have—cost your organization. If you’ve had any defaults, buybacks, foreclosures, non-salable loans or pricing hits from the secondary market, it’s imperative that you understand the root cause of each defect. This too will be a key driver of your top priorities for corrective action.
 
It’s easy to feel like you’re already doing enough. If you have a solid QC program, you are definitely doing your share to protect your business, the industry, and your borrowers. However, I urge you to keep in mind that while reactive QC is a fantastic use of powerful information, proactive QC transitions information into the next-level knowledge that reduces risk, lower costs, and builds long-standing mortgage powerhouses. 

Phil McCall is chief operating officer of ARMCO, a provider of mortgage QC technologyPhil McCall is chief operating officer of ARMCO, a provider of mortgage QC technology. Phil has more than 20 years of industry experience that spans executive roles in mortgage lending and mortgage technology. Phil is a licensed real estate broker in California, is a direct endorsed underwriter for the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), and has held real estate and broker licenses in more than 20 other states.

This article originally appeared in the June 2017 print edition of National Mortgage Professional Magazine.

 

The results have been in for some time. According to a survey by industry leader Animoto, videos engage prospective customers up to four times more effectively than print media and online text content. That’s why mortgage professionals need to know the best ways to make and use video productions.
 
Whether you are the chief marketing officer of a major lender or an independent loan officer, you are responsible for presenting information to your audiences. Therefore, the motion pictures that you release must be fascinating, informative and appropriate to the situation. Otherwise, you may lose customers to the competitor with superior video production, if not a better loan product.
 
The statistics on video marketing effectiveness are staggering. According to the Mortgage Marketing Institute, audiences have a 75 percent better understanding of a product when viewing a video as opposed to reading information. Landing pages with video increase conversions up to 82 percent, and e-mails that include videos can increase click-through rates by 90 percent.
 
Here are eight insights about video that will help marketers and loan officers get great results when you deploy video either for lead generation, product and process information, or compliance purposes.

 
1. Quality is critical
Because every mortgage company offers some variety of video content, you cannot afford to post or distribute low quality content. With more than 300 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, viewers are drawn to those that are the sharpest. And, even though most videos are still viewed on computer screens, use of mobile devices is increasing exponentially. On small screens, low resolution, unpolished productions are at an even greater disadvantage. Producing quality videos can be affordable. It just takes planning.
 
2. Your video needs an introduction
People will not watch your video, no matter how good it is, if it is not presented and promoted properly. Hollywood knows that. Think about the press and promotion involved with new film releases. Typically, the more fanfare, the more widely viewed the film is out of the gate. Mortgage marketers can do the same. As soon as you start planning an informational video or Webinar, spread the word. In addition to sending invites, alert people in the footers of e-mails, on social media, and on the relevant pages of your Web site. Wherever you post the video, make sure the description is clear (with appropriate keywords particularly on YouTube for SEO purposes), concise and captivating.
 
3. Close and personal
Video allows for a visual connection than can only be imagined in print. As humans, we naturally are inclined to feel a connection if we can see an image rather than read about it. Also, audiences relate to presenters and performers. If you are a marketer producing a video, check out what other lenders have distributed on YouTube and make sure your presenter comes across as more engaging, knowledgeable and trustworthy than other spokespeople.

 
4. Don’t overwhelm your audience
Experts agree on the perfect length for an informative or promotional video: As short as possible! When people find your video on YouTube, your Web site or in an e-mail, they decide to watch because the subject, title or cover image grabs them. Once you have the viewer’s attention, explain what you plan to cover in your video, as quickly as possible. If you do that effectively, they are likely to phone, complete a form or perhaps watch another video. If the video loses focus or wanders, you may have lost the viewer as a customer. According to studies by video hosting and analytics company Wistia, audience engagement is highest for videos of one to two minutes in length.
 
5. Don’t leave your Webinars in cold storage
Too many companies fail to extract the full value of the Webinars they produce. Depending on the substance of the discussion, one extended length live, interactive session can be morphed into numerous communication vehicles. Was a fresh idea articulated? Use it to germinate a blog post or speech. Was there a particularly dynamic 30-60 second exchange? Edit it and post to YouTube.
 
6. A video in every e-mail
Sure, you distribute your videos via e-mail blasts and in marketing automation/CRM campaigns. But, mortgage professionals may also consider building their video audiences almost every time they send an e-mail. Whether you are a CEO or a loan processor, you can provide an opportunity to expand the recipient’s understanding of your company. Include links in the footers or in a PS, always with a poignant description or introduction. The overall impact of your videos is greatly impacted by the number of YouTube views and comments. Suppose all employees at your company send 5,000 e-mails a day, each containing your YouTube video link. If 0.5 percent of the recipients check out a video each working day of the year, that converts to 6,500 additional video views each year, enough to significantly enhance your ranking on Google and YouTube.
 
7. The 3Rs: Reiterate, Reuse and Recycle
The video you create today can be used for many years to come. Compare them to television reruns. You may not hook most of your audience the first time you distribute your video or broadcast your Webinar. Therefore, continually promote each video on different social media platforms. Of course, you don’t want to tweet about the same video 10 times a day. But, you will benefit by announcing each video in your portfolio two to three times a week. Shuffle the times of day you post about each video and use various headlines, teasers and introductions.
 
8. Ask for it
Ask your customers for a recorded video testimonial after closing.  If you record these videos yourself be sure to use a tripod to keep the camera steady. If you cannot record in person, a recorded Skype interview might suffice. There are many ways to use these third-party endorsements. You can post each one individually on social media or use them to punctuate and enhance a longer commercially produced video about your company’s services. Remember to ask your subjects to sign a standard release form to allow you to use their statement and specify exactly how it may be used.
 
Once you have used these insights and tips to integrate more video into your marketing, the enthusiasm surrounding your products will increase steadily. Remember, quality is critical so you may need to take smaller steps in implementing video. However you decide to proceed, remember to have fun and use the platform to your advantage.

Ashley Benson is Senior Marketing Specialist for Angel Oak Mortgage Solutions. She can be reached by phone at (855) 539-4910 or by eimail at Ashley.Benson@AngelOakMS.com.

This article orignally appeared in the July 2017 print edition of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. 

 

 

The New York State Department of Financial Services recently re-adopted a registration procedure for mortgage loan servicers
The New York State Department of Financial Services recently re-adopted a registration procedure for mortgage loan servicers. As a part of the process, professionals need to meet bonding requirements and provide appropriate errors and omissions (E&O) insurance coverage. 
 
The Superintendent of Financial Services brought the law back into force with Emergency Adoption of Part 418 of the Superintendent’s Regulations and Supervisory Procedures MB 109 and MB 110 on July 23, 2017. The regulations become effective as of this date.
 
The registration ensures that all operating mortgage loan servicers will comply with state rules that govern their trade. The license bond, fidelity bond and E&O insurance provide additional security for the state and its citizens against servicers’ potential acts of fraud, embezzlement, misplacement, or forgery.
 
Here are the most important points of the re-adopted legislation that mortgage loan servicers in the state of New York should consider. 
 
The reinstated registration process for NY mortgage loan servicers
As of July 23, 2017, any person or entity wanting to operate as a mortgage loan servicer in the state will need to undergo a registration procedure with the Department of Financial Services. The steps are outlined in Supervisory Procedure MB 109. Supervisory Procedure MB 110 changes the procedure for change in control of a servicer.
 
Applicants have to present a completed application form, fingerprint cards, and proof of payment of a $3,000 investigation fee, a $102.25 fingerprint processing fee, and a $100 NMLS processing fee.
 
In the application form, mortgage loan servicers have to provide the following information:
 
►Personal information
►Business entity information
►Records of previous licenses
►Financial statements
►Proof of experience and qualifications
 
There is a transitional period for mortgage loan servicers who were active as of June 30, 2009 and who applied for registration before July 31, 2009. They are deemed in compliance with the registration rules as long as the Superintendent does not deny their application.
 
The re-adopted surety bond and insurance requirements
An indispensable part of the newly reinstated registration for NY mortgage loan servicers is to post a minimum  surety bond amount of $250,000. The exact amount is determined by the Department during the registration process.
 
Mortgage loan servicers also have to obtain a fidelity bond and errors and omissions (E&O) insurance coverage. Their amounts depend on the aggregate dollar volume of business conducted in New York two years before the current year, as follows:
 
►Up to $100,000,000 aggregate dollar amount: $300,000
►Of the next $500,000,000: $300,000 plus 0.15%
►Of the next $400,000,000: $300,000 plus 0.125%
►Of the amount over $1 billion: $300,000 plus 0.1%
 
The deductible amount of the fidelity bond and the E&O policy cannot exceed $100,000 or 5% of the face bond amount, whichever is greater.
 
The purpose of the surety bond and insurance requirements is to provide an extra layer of safety for the licensing authority and the general public that a registered mortgage loan servicer will comply with all applicable state laws. These security instruments can provide a compensation in case an affected party suffers losses as a result of a servicer’s illegal actions.
 
How the bonding costs are formulated
With the reinstated registration requirements, it’s important for mortgage loan servicers to know how their costs will change. Besides an insurance premium for their E&O coverage, they also need to account for the bonding premiums on their license and fidelity bonds.
 
The bond price that mortgage professionals have to pay depends on the bond amounts set by the Department. The higher the required amount, the higher the premium that needs to be covered on it. 
 
Besides this, the cost is determined on the basis of the personal and business finances of the bond applicant. The surety that provides the bonding needs to consider factors such as credit score, business financials, and assets and liquidity. The servicer’s professional experience can also play a role in the price formulation. If the candidate is deemed as financially stable, the bond premium will be lower.
 
Applicants with problematic finances often can still get bonded, but at a higher price. Servicers who are planning to apply for their bonds can work on reducing their costs. Improving the personal credit score and completing any outstanding payments can decrease the bond cost.
 
What the changes mean for NY mortgage loan servicers
The re-adopted registration, bonding and insurance requirements create a solid framework for the mortgage loan servicing field in NY.
 
In practical terms, the changes impose a new administrative process that servicers have to go through. There are also financial consequences, as professionals need to cover bond and insurance premiums in order to meet the registration requirements of the Department.
 
While introducing a heavier startup process for servicers, the emergency regulations aim to raise the standards in the loan servicing field. Their goal is to ensure a higher level of security for all parties involved. In the long run, improved industry standards are in the interest of diligent and hard-working mortgage loan servicers, as the reputation of their trade is boosted.

The New York State Department of Financial Services recently re-adopted a registration procedure for mortgage loan servicersVic Lance is the founder and president of Lance Surety Bond Associates. He is a surety bond expert who helps mortgage professionals get licensed and bonded. Vic’s phone number is (877) 514-5146 and his e-mail is info@suretybonds.org.

 

Ray DeMar is president of 1st United Mortgage Banc in Lincoln, Neb., and Past President of the Nebraska Association of Mortgage Brokers (NEAMB)
Ray DeMar is president of 1st United Mortgage Banc in Lincoln, Neb., and Past President of the Nebraska Association of Mortgage Brokers (NEAMB).Ray DeMar is president of 1st United Mortgage Banc in Lincoln, Neb., and Past President of the Nebraska Association of Mortgage Brokers (NEAMB). National Mortgage Professional Magazine recently spoke with him regarding his trade association leadership.
 
How and why did you get involved with the Nebraska Association of Mortgage Brokers (NEAMB)? Can you share the track within your association that led to your leadership role?
I joined both the Nebraska Association of Mortgage Brokers and NAMB—The Association of Mortgage Professionals in 2007. The mortgage crisis was underway and the need to be informed was a leading factor in my joining. Once a member, I joined the Board of Directors, I later became involved in the association’s Fall Conference and Membership Committees, although I did not chair either of them. I eventually was elected association President and served in that capacity from 2015 to early 2016. I have very much enjoyed the association.
 
Why do you feel members of the mortgage profession in your state should join NEAMB?
The association puts on a Fall Conference that is usually held over the course of two days. On the first day, we have continuing education classes that last for four hours, and later, have a social event where all of the affiliates operating in the industry–title companies, lenders, insurance companies and so forth–come in and tell us what’s new and exciting. We have about 100 members and they are a great group of people.
 
What role does NEAMB play in the federal and state legislative and regulatory environments? Are there any items on the current agenda you would like to highlight?
We have not been overly involved in regulatory issues. On occasion, we get e-mails from NAMB asking us to contact our representatives regarding specific issues. We also have an individual on the Board who follows the legislative side and updates up on what Nebraska might doing that would adversely or positively affect our industry.
 
Ray DeMar is president of 1st United Mortgage Banc in Lincoln, Neb., and Past President of the Nebraska Association of Mortgage Brokers (NEAMB)What do you see as your most significant accomplishments with NEAMB?
The ability to put on our own continuing education classes. Shortly after the crash began, it became obvious that everyone would have to take the NMLS. We decided to take the initiative and have continuing education in our Nebraska organization. I don’t know how many states did that.
 
In your opinion, what can be done to bring more young people into mortgage careers?
Educating young people about the industry would be helpful. The association has talked about it, but to date, we have not established an outreach program. As for why many Millennials are not pursuing this, I imagine many still remember the mortgage crisis.
 
How would you define your state's housing market?
Nebraska has always been a very stable market, even during periods of high rate environments, recession and inflation.

Phil Hall is Managing Editor of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He may be reached by e-mail at PhilH@MortgageNewsNetwork.com.
 
Hal Tippetts is a sales manager at Stewart Title in Portsmouth, N.H., and president of the Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals (MAMP)
Hal Tippetts is a sales manager at Stewart Title in Portsmouth, N.H., and president of the Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals (MAMP)Hal Tippetts is a sales manager at Stewart Title in Portsmouth, N.H., and president of the Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals (MAMP). National Mortgage Professional Magazine recently spoke with him regarding his work with this trade association.
 
How and why did you get involved with the Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals? Can you share the track within the association that led to the leadership role?
I was recruited to serve as a Director in 2008 for the Maine Mortgage Bankers Association. I was relatively new to the marketplace at the time, although I had been involved in exhibiting at industry conferences and had joined both the Maine Bankers Association and Maine Association of Mortgage Brokers. Around 2009 and 2010, the Maine Association of Mortgage Brokers experienced some attrition due to market conditions, and it was proposed to combine the two organizations. I participated on the Steering Committee, and out of that, came a new organization, the Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals.
 
I served as a Board Director for several years, and chaired the Membership Committee for a period of time. In October of 2013, the Board nominated and selected me to become President, and I have been reappointed every year since.
 
Why do you feel members of the mortgage profession in your state join MAMP?
I believe members join our organization to stay connected, have access to industry information and educational opportunities, and to have a stronger political voice. Our mission is to educate, advocate and promote best practices in the mortgage industry in the state of Maine. We host nine breakfast meetings during the year, a wonderfully successful charity golf tournament, and also host an expo each year in November. We partner with other mortgage organizations in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island and Connecticut in planning and promoting regional events such as the New England Mortgage Bankers Conference, and we partner with the national Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).
 
We strive to help our members understand Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) rules and guidelines, as well as state and national legislative issues. We make sure to support legislation that benefits the industry, and come out against what we view as harmful. And, ultimately, we make sure that we, as an industry, do what its best for the borrower.
 
Hal Tippetts is a sales manager at Stewart Title in Portsmouth, N.H., and president of the Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals (MAMP)What role does your association play in the federal and state legislative and regulatory environments, and are there any items on the current agenda you would like to highlight?
The Maine legislative session came to a close, and there was not a lot of legislation concerning us this year, for which we are grateful. In years past, we dealt with legislation that threatened to make the foreclosure process more difficult, and we came out against condo homeowner association super-lien capability. This year, we supported a bill that put Maine more in line with federal law allowing appraisal management companies (AMCs) to continue doing business in the state.
On a federal level, we send at least three members each year to participate in the MBA’s Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. The national issues we are watching include GSE reform and the over-burdensome regulatory environment imposed by the CFPB and other federal agencies.
 
What do you see as your most significant accomplishments with MAMP?
As a group, I think we’ve grown significantly. MAMP is now up to 70 member organizations, and our budget has increased. We also have an increase in diversity in our membership, with credit unions, mortgage brokers, local and national banks, and affiliates that are very active in our organization. We have increased the number and overall quality of events available to members, and have improved our advocacy efforts.
 
In your opinion, what can be done to bring more young people into mortgage careers?
It’s a great question. Our Executive Director, Josh Wolfe, is in his 20s, and with his guidance we’ve tried to look for opportunities in recruiting Millennials. We partnered with the University of South Maine with a booth at their recent job fair. We made an effort to reach out and help Millennials understand that the mortgage industry is a great place for a career, and that there are a lot of entry-level jobs in the industry.
 
How would you define your state's housing market?
The market is healthy and moving forward. We are currently a strong purchase market, and there is still refinance business continuing. However, in some areas–particularly southern Maine–we are struggling with the inventory issue. But we have been busy.

Phil Hall is managing editor of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He may be reached by e-mail at PhilH@MortgageNewsNetwork.com.
 
A bipartisan duo of senators is reportedly working on a proposal that would break up the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs)
With the August recess looming, members of Congress are preparing to head home to their states and districts. It’s a perfect time for members of the Mortgage Action Alliance (MAA) to engage with your elected representatives. The MAA is a non-partisan and free nationwide grassroots lobbying network of real estate finance industry professionals, affiliated with the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) that allows our industry to speak with elected officials with one voice. If you aren’t an MAA member, you can join for free at MBA.org/JoinMAA.
 
This summer, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) capped off another successful National Advocacy Conference (NAC), with more than 365 attendees from 43 states. NAC is an annual opportunity for mortgage professionals from across the country to engage their elected officials face to face, and this year, industry advocates were able to attend 225 meetings on Capitol Hill. Couldn’t make it to Washington? At NAC, MBA announced the launch of the MAA App.
 
The MAA App is designed to make standing up for the real estate finance industry easier than ever. On the App, you can:
 
►Receive updates on bills affecting the real estate finance industry
►Let your elected officials know how those bills will impact you directly
►Research bills that MBA is watching
►Find contact information for your members of Congress
►Join MAA
►Learn about MORPAC, MBA's political action committee
 
To download the app, visit MBA.org/MAAApp or search for "Mortgage Action Alliance" in the App Store or Google Play.
 
With members of Congress returning to their states and districts, August is a perfect time to reach out to your elected officials. Visit Action.MBA.org to look up your elected officials and view a list of current calls to action. Current Calls to Action include a Call to Action in support of HR 2948, the SAFE Transitional Licensing Act, which would provide a temporary license for loan originators transitioning between federally-insured depositories and non-depositories, as well as across state lines.
 
Whether you come to Washington for the NAC, talk to your members of Congress in your home district, or take action using the App, your voice matters. MAA is working hard to make it easy to take action—and your elected officials need to hear from you.

Gene M. Lugat is chairman of the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Mortgage Action Alliance. Gene is executive vice president, national industry and political relations for PrimeLending Inc.

This article originally appeared in the August 2017 print edition of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. 


Question: We are going paperless, but we are unsure about retaining documents under the Truth-in-Lending Act (TILA), since we know that regulatory enforcement requirements may cause us to hold on to evidence. That goes along with our concerns about retaining paper copies, too. You may have answered a question like this one before, but we are still unsure of what evidence we need to retain to show compliance. So, we want to know what is the timeline for retaining documents beyond the required time required in case of regulatory enforcement against us? Also, must we keep paper copies as evidence of compliance?
 
Answer
You have asked a complicated question about regulatory enforcement parameters, with respect to record retention. Because you have framed your question in the context of TILA, this response will be narrowed to Regulation Z, the implementing regulation of TILA.
Except with respect to advertising, creditors must retain evidence of compliance with Regulation Z for a period of two years after the date the disclosures are required to be made or action is required to be taken. Enforcement of TILA, however, may require the creditor to retain records for longer periods necessary to carry out enforcement responsibilities and administrative actions.
 
In effect, this means that administrative agencies responsible for enforcing a subject regulation may require creditors under their jurisdictions to retain records for a longer period, if necessary to perform their enforcement responsibilities. [12 CFR § 226.25(a)]
As to paper retention, in terms of adequate evidence of compliance, actual paper copies of disclosures or other business records are not absolutely necessary to be retained. Evidence may be retained on microfilm, microfiche, computer programs, or by any other method that reproduces records accurately.
 
As a matter of fact, the creditor needs to retain only enough information to reconstruct the required disclosures or other records. By way of example, the creditor does not need to retain each open-end, periodic statement for purposes of complying with record retention of a home-equity plan's periodic statement, as long as the specific information on each statement can be retrieved. In other words, written procedures for compliance with the disclosure requirements and a sample periodic statement represent adequate evidence of compliance. [12 CFR Supplement I to 226, Official Staff Interpretations, § 226.25(a)-2]

Jonathan Foxx is Managing Director of Lenders Compliance Group, the first and only full-service, mortgage risk management firm in the United States, specializing exclusively in outsourced mortgage compliance and offering a suite of services in residential mortgage banking for banks and non-banks. If you would like to contact him, please e-mail Compliance@LendersComplianceGroup.com.

 

Susie Stringer is a Senior Loan Officer at SecurityNational Mortgage Inc. in Round Rock, Texas, and President of the Central Texas Association of Mortgage Professionals (CTAMP)
Susie Stringer is a Senior Loan Officer at SecurityNational Mortgage Inc. in Round Rock, Texas, and President of the Central Texas Association of Mortgage Professionals Susie Stringer is a Senior Loan Officer at SecurityNational Mortgage Inc. in Round Rock, Texas, and President of the Central Texas Association of Mortgage Professionals (CTAMP). National Mortgage Professional Magazine recently had the chance to chat with Susie regarding her involvement with CTAMP and the state of the housing market in the Lone Star State.
 
How and why did you get involved with the Central Texas Association of Mortgage Professionals? Can you share the track within the association that led to your current leadership role?
Having been in the mortgage industry for more than 20 years, I was introduced to the CTAMP Board of Directors through an associate. Once I met this group, I realized what their goals were and what an amazing group of people they are, donating their time and energy for our association. It was an effortless transition to get involved and to share what I could of myself.
 
Why do you feel members of the mortgage profession in your state should join CTAMP?
Knowledge is power. We are a local chapter of NAMB—The Association of Mortgage Professionals, and they support and provide information and representation to the industry. We focus on teaching, while working to keep individuals informed on changes in the industry.
 
What role does CTAMP play in the federal and state legislative and regulatory environments?
As a trade organization, we are involved in both state and federal legislative issues, and we send our representatives to lobby each year. It is a very exciting time to be in this industry.
 
What do you see as your most significant accomplishments with the association?
While expanding our membership, we have been able to provide an extremely robust education program that addresses the day-to-day concerns of mortgage professionals. Our motto is: “Don't Wait, Educate!”
 
What is the synergy between CTAMP and NAMB?
We are a local chapter in the state of Texas, working with NAMB, and we have a fluid connection with them.
 
In your opinion, what can be done to bring more young people into mortgage careers?
This is still a tricky one, but I do believe it is an important subject. Young people need to have a way of integrating themselves into the mortgage field. Because the industry stepped away from paid mentoring programs as a result of heavy regulations, this may be a good time to revisit and revise that idea in order to attract a new wave of young mortgage professionals.
 
How would you define your state's housing market?
Very strong, steady and robust. 
Phil Hall is managing editor of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He may be reached by e-mail at PhilH@MortgageNewsNetwork.com.
Susie Stringer is a Senior Loan Officer at SecurityNational Mortgage Inc. in Round Rock, Texas, and President of the Central Texas Association of Mortgage Professionals
Sherry Bitner is Branch Manager and Mortgage Loan Originator at Oakland Park, Fla.-based RE Financial Services Inc. and president of the Suncoast Chapter of the Florida Association of Mortgage Professionals
Sherry Bitner is Branch Manager and Mortgage Loan Originator at Oakland Park, Fla.-based RE Financial Services Inc. and president of the Suncoast Chapter of the Florida Association of Mortgage Professionals Sherry Bitner is Branch Manager and Mortgage Loan Originator at Oakland Park, Fla.-based RE Financial Services Inc. and president of the Suncoast Chapter of the Florida Association of Mortgage Professionals (FAMP). National Mortgage Professional Magazine recently spoke with Sherry regarding her trade association leadership.
 
How and why did you get involved with the Florida Association of Mortgage Professionals? Can you share the track within FAMP that led to the leadership role in your chapter?
I was introduced, and joined, the Suncoast Chapter of the Florida Association of Mortgage Brokers, as it was called at the time, in 1988 by the broker I worked with at the time. He encouraged me to go to meetings so I could learn more about the mortgage business. At that time, there were very few resources for education, and I found FAMB to be very beneficial to fill that void.
 
I was able to develop professional relationships with others in the business and share experiences of failures and successes to help grow my business through my association involvement. The relationships with the lenders and vendors also built my network, so I could reach out to them for services and additional knowledge. I also spent 10 years as a Wholesale Account Executive and was encouraged by the companies to attend the local FAMB meetings to promote and grow my accounts. 
 
In 2004, I opened my own brokerage company and became involved as an Executive Officer in the Suncoast Chapter of FAMB in 2005, when I also became involved in attending state meetings. I was learning more about business management, commitments, managing my time more effectively, and it also improved my ability to work together collectively as a team. I was taking myself to an entirely new professional level.
 
Today, my passion is strong in supporting FAMP as President of the Suncoast Chapter. It takes a village to run a chapter, and with all of our dedicated Directors, we are able to grow our chapter. On the state level, I serve as a Statewide Director, and I am involved in both the Membership Committee and the PAC Committee.
 
Why do you feel members of the mortgage profession in your state join FAMP?
The majority of long-term members feel it is important to support their professional organization because of what FAMP does. They know they are supporting those on the chapter and state level who are working hard to represent them. They always attend continuing education classes and tell me it is always better in person because of the discussions that take place in a live classroom setting, and they know they are supporting FAMP. 
 
The state and local trade shows bring in lenders and vendors from across the state and country. The FAMP state convention provides outstanding educational speakers on the most informative educational breakout sessions available anywhere. Newly licensed individuals and new processors are eager to learn as much as possible. By attending FAMP’s various meetings and events, they have a variety of resources at their fingertips. 
 
Sherry Bitner is Branch Manager and Mortgage Loan Originator at Oakland Park, Fla.-based RE Financial Services Inc. and president of the Suncoast Chapter of the Florida Association of Mortgage Professionals What role does FAMP play in the federal and state legislative and regulatory environments? Are there any items on the current agenda you would like to highlight?
On the local level, we invite all of the legislators in our area to meetings each year to socialize with members and speak with everyone. This builds a professional connection and recognition of who we are with those local legislators, and it also helps support our state efforts. Each year, all of the chapters meet in Tallahassee for our legislative visitation day.
 
On the federal level, our state organization sends participants to NAMB’s Legislative & Regulatory Conference in Washington, D.C. NAMB does an excellent job on updating us as to the federal level agendas and FAMP does an excellent job on keeping us abreast of the local agenda. On the chapter level, our agenda is to reach out to get to know our local legislators as much as possible. When we need to reach out to them, they know who we are and we are able to share our specific points of view on specific legislation with them.
 
What do you see as your most significant accomplishments within the association?
We have managed to increase the Suncoast Chapter’s membership consistently over the past three years. We hold monthly meetings and ask for surveys at our meetings from the attendees as to the type of events they want, and the majority of them are all educational-based. We also do several network appreciation gatherings a year as well.
 
Our biggest accomplishment is our local trade show each year. This year, the Suncoast Chapter Trade Show doubled the attendance from the prior year. We have increased the number of Suncoast Chapter Directors each year, as well.
Our main objective is to keep growing the chapter and offering our members the tools to succeed in their busy professional lives.
 
What is synergy between FAMP and NAMB?
NAMB sends out all types of valuable information covering government affairs, education, trade shows, and updated news articles on current events to everyone. We have Valerie Saunders, who is Vice President of NAMB, and Kimber White, who is a Director for NAMB, both from FAMP. We have excellent representation and resources because of their participation. 
 
Over the years as a member of NAMB, one of the best benefits I have found is when I have a client who is purchasing a property in another state and needs a mortgage. I will search the NAMB membership and find a member in the city the buyer will be purchasing and contact the NAMB member and then refer my client to that member. I have also experience the referral coming to me as well. Our membership brings professional recognition and collaboration which clients respect.
 
In your opinion, what can be done to bring more young people into mortgage careers?
Perhaps a good start to bring more young people into our career would be contacting the local college and university level to introduce students to the career opportunity. Another idea is to participate in job fairs on the local level. Many new people entering as Loan Originators and Processors are requesting training to make their work environment more streamlined and productive. 
 
Our FAMP Foundation has compiled a Bootcamp for new Loan Originators and Processors, and has brought this to the local Chapter areas. It has been extremely successful this year. It all comes back to education, where FAMB brought me education value 29 years ago, and today, it is still bringing that same value to new members. 
 
How would you define your state's housing market?
Overall, the housing market in our FAMP Suncoast Chapter area has not reached the highest values that existed prior to the recession in many places, but it is getting close. Inventory is low, builders are building, sellers are looking for the highest purchase price possible, buyers want a good deal on the original asking price, and bidding wars occur on properties priced right in the marketplace. Thus, there are still appraisals coming in below the purchase price, which is not at all a bad thing as it controls the steady growth. Overall, the market is in healthy shape at this time and continues to grow.
Phil Hall is managing editor of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He may be reached by e-mail at PhilH@MortgageNewsNetwork.com.

 
Jayne Bail is a mortgage loan originator at Denver-headquartered Platte River Mortgage & Investments Inc. and president of the Colorado Association of Mortgage Professionals (CoAMP)
Jayne Bail is a mortgage loan originator at Denver-headquartered Platte River Mortgage & Investments Inc. and president of the Colorado Association of Mortgage Professionals (CoAMP)Jayne Bail is a mortgage loan originator at Denver-headquartered Platte River Mortgage & Investments Inc. and president of the Colorado Association of Mortgage Professionals (CoAMP). National Mortgage Professional Magazine recently spoke with Jayne regarding her work with this trade group.
 
How and why did you get involved in the Colorado Association of Mortgage Professionals (CoAMP)? Can you share the track within the association that led to the leadership role?
I’ve been a member of the Colorado state association since 1998. In 2008-2009, I was inspired by the leadership at that time, Douglas Braden and Kay Cleland, and signed up for the Education Committee. After a year on the Education Committee, I was nominated and accepted a position on the Board of Directors in 2010. I’ve been on the Board ever since, except for a brief absence during my mother’s declining health. I’ve been serving next to Douglas Braden, CoAMP Past President, on the Government Affairs Committee for the past five years as well.
 
Here is why. In 2006-2007, I started to get very frustrated with the business. The rules were changing and I felt out of touch. I found CoAMP to be a foundation of information. It became my portal, so to speak, to learn from other industry partners, peers and community. My participation with CoAMP geared me up for what was to come and how to handle the obstacles of the new administration and rulemaking.
 
My participation with CoAMP has helped me to grow and learn what leadership is about, what teamwork is and that being a part of the group that makes the difference for others in our community is inspirational. I get up every morning with the intention of making a difference with everyone I have the privilege to engage. And I don’t mean just with CoAMP—this has allowed me to be a better Loan Officer to my clients. I care more, even more than before. There is a bigger picture now.
 
Why do you feel members of the mortgage profession in your state join CoAMP?
I believe other members are here to learn, network and to be advocated for on the legislative front.
 
What role does CoAMP play in the federal and state legislative and regulatory environments, and are there any items on the current agenda you would like to highlight?
Our GA Committee Co-Chairs are Douglas Braden and myself. I focus mostly on the state issues, while Doug focuses on the federal level. We have a committee of five members. On the state side, we are very involved and well-known with our state regulators. We are at each Board of Mortgage Loan Originator meeting, every other third Wednesday of the month. We monitor legislation and weigh in with the committees and members as issues arise. We sit on the Inter-Professional Committee and Colorado Housing Council. The Inter-Professional Committee consists of trade associations in the housing industry, such as CAR, LTAC, Appraiser Association, State Departments of Real Estate, of Insurance and Real Estate Attorneys. We meet monthly to discuss what’s happening in each association, any issues, rules or laws that might be coming up. The Colorado Housing Council meets once a month, and we usually have a speaker that addresses housing issues in our state.
 
Our state is currently going through our sunset review. We have met with the office that is conducting the review and have made some recommendations for changes and improvements to our current state law.
 
What do you see as your most significant accomplishments with the association?
Most significant is our presence and contribution at the table of the state legislators, regulators and trade association interaction/collaboration. We’ve also partnered with Mortgage Educators and Compliance (MEC) to provide all continuing education to our members. MEC’s involvement in our association has increased the awareness of our association in our state community and has had a direct connection to our increased membership. 
 
What is the synergy between CoAMP and NAMB?
Our connection with NAMB is most effective with the federal level of our government affairs efforts. Doug works closely with NAMB’s GA Committee to communicate with our representatives on Capitol Hill.
 
In your opinion, what can be done to bring more young people into mortgage careers?
This is a tough question. I started in the industry straight out of college and worked in secondary marketing, post-closing auditing/underwriting and processing before I even thought about originating. This was a great path of entering the industry. I just don’t think the current generation sees this as the great amazing profitable industry that it actually is.
 
How would you define the state of Colorado’s housing market?
Our housing market is crazy … not enough inventory and not enough entry-level/affordable housing to take care of the demand. This is driving up values at a high rate of appreciation and making it difficult for the first-time homebuyer to afford a home. 
Phil Hall is Managing Editor of National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He may be reached by e-mail at PhilH@MortgageNewsNetwork.com.