With less than three weeks to go before the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) begins enforcing the new Good Faith Estimate (GFE) regulations, mortgage originators can now create more accurate GFEs quickly and efficiently using the SmartGFE Service, a comprehensive source for real estate closing costs and associated data in the marketplace. The new service from ClosingCorp, offers a data solution for sections 4 through 8 on the 2010 GFE Form, which is backed by the company's SmartGFE Compliance Guarantee.
The SmartGFE Service provides real-time fees from local, regional and national vendors in nine categories such as title insurance, settlement services, closing attorneys, home inspections, pest inspections, appraisers, and more, as well as local taxes and recording fees calculated specifically for each transaction to help create GFEs that meet HUD's new mandated tolerance limits.
The SmartGFE Service is currently integrated with Calyx Point 7.2, one of the nation's leading loan origination software (LOS) platforms, with more LOS integrations in development. Non-Calyx Point users can access the data at the newly-launched SmartGFE.com Web site.
New Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) regulations require mortgage originators to provide borrowers with binding GFEs for loan origination costs, fees and taxes, which cannot vary from the final costs on the HUD-1. Estimates for required third-party services such as title insurance or closing attorney fees have a 10 percent tolerance limit. Estimates must be provided within three business days of a loan application and lenders must, subject to certain changed circumstances, make up the difference if final costs exceed the GFE tolerances.
A recent survey of closing service professionals and lenders found that a majority of respondents, 80.5 percent, said they have encountered difficulties in beginning to use the new GFE or HUD-1 forms. Of that 80.5 percent, 67 percent said they were having difficulty even though they had taken extensive measures to meet the implementation requirements.
"SmartGFE helps solve many of the widespread problems originators have encountered with the new forms and regulations. Now lenders can create estimates that are competitive because they are based on the most up-to-date data available," said Paul Mass, president of ClosingCorp. "We utilize sophisticated technology and vast databases of fees for closing service providers combined with recording fees and transfer tax county record data to produce a broad, extremely accurate cost estimate that is, in our opinion, unparalleled in the industry."
ClosingCorp is currently delivering data to a number of banks and is in discussion with others. "We also work with key order gateways such as LPS' RealEC, which incorporates our data in their network to serve large bank clients," he said.
Starting May 1, ClosingCorp will offer a SmartGFE Compliance Guarantee for lenders using the service to assure them that data they select using the SmartGFE Service will not result in a tolerance violation. "Our compliance guarantee program demonstrates the confidence we have in the accuracy of the fees, taxes and rates in the SmartGFE," added Mass.
For more information, visit www.closingcorp.com.