John Vong is Co-Founder and President of ComplianceEase. He is responsible for the company's day-to-day operations and leads the implementation of the Board of Directors' strategies and policies. He also serves as a liaison coordinating the activities of the Advisory Board.
The goal over the past few years has been to move compliance from a manual to an automated process, and more specifically moving from the post-close sampling process to the point of origination process. But, as we’ve discussed, the level of automation has been relatively basic, and more focused on preventing errors than taking friction and delays out of the underwriting and review processes.
Leading legal and compliance experts at several different HMDA sessions at MBA Tech warned attendees that the amount of data and the unprecedented level of transparency that it will give regulators pose heightened compliance risks for banks and mortgage lenders.
Maybe it’s the proximity to Disney’s Magic Kingdom, but at the Mortgage Bankers Association tech conference in Orlando this week I couldn’t help remembering futurist Arthur C. Clark’s third law of technology that says, ‘‘Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” But can technology magically solve the industry’s compliance challenges?
The mortgage industry is leveraging technology like never before, streamlining processes across the spectrum of lending, servicing, investing and real estate. The combination of regulatory pressure and consumer expectations have set a high standard for efficiency and transparency, requiring a significant investment of time, money and talent to hit the right notes for both.
Ironically, the monkey on the mortgage industry’s back for the past 10 years — increasing regulation — is the very thing that forced companies to find efficiencies in every part of the process, which serves them well as they look to engage tech-savvy consumers. Even as the enforcement of some of those regulations is now in question, the long-lasting benefits of investing in automation will stand.
Mortgage banks have traditionally been slow to embrace new technologies, and while the technology that has improved efficiency, security and customer experience in a multitude of other industries (transportation, education and retail, to name a few) is finding its way into the loan production process, a lot of opportunity still exists in other stages of the mortgage life cycle.