A relentless tide of new regulations in the past five years has pushed mortgage lenders, title and settlement agents and real estate service providers to adjust to a rapidly changing regulatory environment, even while they search for volume. Under TILA-RESPA, the focus on the integrated closing disclosure means that reliable closing cost data is now a critical part of compliance, and lenders are responsible for making sure it is accurate.
ClosingCorp, a San Diego, California-based company specializing in providing actual closing cost data to lenders, has released a new risk management system to effectively manage future closing processes in the midst of the increased regulations.
“The closing disclosure forms have been redesigned by the CFPB to be more consumer-friendly, and the implications for creating those forms electronically and mapping the data appropriately are significant,” said ClosingCorp’s CEO, Brian Benson.
“All parties are relying on technology software providers to be ready for the changes by August 2015. With a compressed timeline, the entire ecosystem is now making operational decisions regarding methods for achieving compliance and trying to build processes to support those approaches,” Benson said.
To meet the TILA-RESPA challenge, ClosingCorp developed its Lumen Risk Management Suite (LumenRMS). The suite features five unique modules that create a comprehensive end-to-end solution to simplify and streamline the closing process for lenders.
LumenRMS incorporates data directly from a loan file and augments it with proprietary ClosingCorp data from its national service provider repository and county property data. This data, along with lender-specific business rules outlining their requirements and preferred providers, are fed into proprietary algorithms to help ensure RESPA compliance. Users are able to ensure that compliant and accurate closing data feeds directly into Good Faith Estimates/Loan Estimate Documents and the final Closing Disclosure.
“LumenRMS provides lenders the ability to educate prospective homeowners on approximate closing costs prior to mortgage qualification, with the most accurate information available in the industry,” Benson said.
“Used in conjunction with the ClosingCorp Closing Calculator, which provides the industry’s most accurate snapshot of potential closing costs in an effort to educate parties to a potential transaction, LumenRMS offers a powerful suite of solutions to improve efficiencies and mitigate third-party risk,” he said.
LumenRMS is just the latest in a long line of innovations from ClosingCorp.
The company, founded in 2006, was the first to enable consumers to shop and compare title insurance rates. In 2008, the company launched Closing.com, a comprehensive, one-stop shop for real estate services related to a residential mortgage closing on the Web.
“As the market and overall regulatory environment changes, ClosingCorp shifts to help its customers thrive,” Benson said. “The company thoroughly understands the real estate ecosystem, and because of its rich history, knows how to connect all players in it.”
In 2010, ClosingCorp launched its SmartGFE service, the first data technology to deliver up-to-date title and settlement fees, real estate services costs, recording fees and transfer taxes for all residential properties in America.
Following fast on that innovation, in 2013 ClosingCorp introduced the industry’s first online ordering technology, which included verified pricing with every order.
“Closing intelligence is ClosingCorp’s core capability. The company is focused on creating an efficient and sustainable approach to managing future closing processes while providing process transparency and managing third-party risk,” Benson said.
The company continues to find new ways to deliver critical data to its clients, using its network of nearly 20,000 services providers delivering closing services — the nation’s largest — to inform the process.
“The fact that ClosingCorp owns and operates the nation’s largest database of actual closing costs from nearly 20,000 service providers, gives lenders an edge, because they can quote accurately and quickly using automation. It also gives title and real estate professionals a competitive edge to market and win new business.”
That competitive edge is more valuable than ever as regulations and costs continue to accelerate for lenders. The company is now working on an end-to-end, holistic solution that will help lenders stay compliant from loan estimate to closing disclosure.
Once a lender generates a loan estimate using actual fees, ClosingCorp will allow them to order those services with essentially one-click ordering, which will also be available on other platforms. The new capability will then follow that order all the way through to closing, and provide a complete audit of the activities associated with that path.
This holistic approach will provide:
A closing with fewer variances, because the services ordered and the services quoted will be identical.
A tremendous pickup in productivity, as activities stay within the same ecosystem.
An accurate, efficient way to benchmark production and offer additional insight on the quality of services delivered by third-party providers.
With ordering and auditing in place, ClosingCorp is well positioned to benchmark provider performance, operations/process quality, and more.