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Over the last decade, e-closing technology has sought to revolutionize the mortgage industry, but hesitancy among industry partners and governing bodies delayed the industry from going completely digital – until now.
Thanks to the pandemic and 2020’s home buying surge, e-closing technology offered businesses and professionals a health safety solution and allowed them to effectively complete their closings remotely. Because of its efficiency, this technology is being viewed as a long-term business solution and its adoption is increasing.
Understanding that mobile and digital technology would be our future, Norcom Mortgage joined other early adopters, and in 2018, we became the first Connecticut mortgage company to offer this service. Due to state regulations at that time, though, we initially implemented a hybrid version. This phase helped us understand the process better, and overcome dissension and skepticism among our industry partners.
Earlier this year, we launched our new Easy Street App. This turnkey solution allows our loan officers to conduct the entire mortgage process on one platform, enhancing our efficiency and revolutionizing how we close loans. It also provides our customers with a convenient and safe way to apply for a loan, stay up-to-date throughout the process and complete an e-closing from their mobile devices. Additionally, our loan officers can share the app with real estate agents and other referral partners, giving them access to mortgage calculators, automatic notifications, and easy access to contact information.
As Norcom transitioned to this digital experience, we’ve found that this technology is:
- Reducing the mortgage process time. From loan initiation to closing, a normal 30-day mortgage process is being trimmed down to 15 days.
- Increasing productivity. With shorter turnaround times and all of the documents being housed on one platform, our loan officers are now able to share information with borrowers, real estate agents, and other partners in real-time allowing them to more time to help more customers.
- Decreasing the opportunity for errors and delays. Like with other e-forms, this technology recognizes when fields aren’t completed. Our Easy Street app also provides borrowers with push notifications, so they’re notified when documents are completed or when more information is needed.
E-closings are the “cherry on top” of the electronic or digital mortgage experience, so if your company is considering adopting e-closing technology, here are some things to consider:
- Know your demographic and get buy-in from your partners. With the 2008 economic downturn, many millennials are buying their first homes now, and while they’re tech-savvy, many still want a hard copy of their mortgage details.
Also, some realtors, real-estate lawyers, and notaries still like conducting business via paper, so check-in with your partners to see how they’re conducting business and if they’re open to transitioning to digital platforms.
- Make sure loan originators and officers know the in’s and out’s of the e-closing process. Your loan originators and officers are your front line. They are the ones “selling” the digital process and platform to potential homebuyers, and will be the ones fielding any questions. To ensure that potential homebuyers have a great digital experience, it is imperative that your loan officers know how to navigate the e-closing process and are experts in whatever software is chosen.
- All of the same players are needed for an e-closing. One of the misconceptions that we came across with our partners is that an e-closing would eliminate the need for one of those partners. That is not true. The homebuyer or homeowner, loan officer, real estate agent, real-estate lawyer, and notaries are still needed for an e-closing.
Mike Dimech is the Executive Vice President, Operations Manager for Norcom Mortgage. The 26-year industry veteran serves as a CT Mortgage Bankers Association board member, and chairs the Technology in Mortgage Banking Committee for the CMBA. He can be reached at [email protected] or (860) 507-1620.