Executive Conversations is a HousingWire web series that profiles powerful people in the financial industry, highlighting the operations and the people that make this sector tick. In the latest installment, we sit down with Caroline Reaves, CEO of Mortgage Contracting Services, to discuss the company’s substantial growth and the importance of being proactive for clients.
Q. Mortgage Contracting Services has grown substantially since the financial crisis, especially in the last two years. What’s behind this growth?
A. For the first 20 years, MCS was primarily an inspection and preservation company, but our business has grown both organically and through acquisitions to meet client needs. We are now a nationwide provider of property preservation, property inspections, REO property maintenance, valuation services, title and closing services and vacant property security.
Regulation has been unbelievable over the last 10 years. This level of regulation requires us to be nimble and responsive, whether that’s changing processes or adding enhancements to our system. We have internal groups that do nothing but make sure we are responsive to client requests, many of which are in response to regulation. It is a tough business but we are glad to do it —this is what makes us a valuable partner to our clients and why we are in business.
Q. What are some benefits to partnering with MCS?
A. We are very proactive in anticipating what our clients need. For instance, after events such as tornados, flooding and earthquakes we don’t wait for our clients to ask us to do disaster inspections. We approach them and say, “Here are your properties in this area, do you need us to do something?”
Our partners have a lot on their plate and if we can take anything off their plate I think that is where we add value. We went through more than 100 audits last year because clients are depending on us for some pretty important processes. We’re doing the things they don’t have time to do and we ensure that we are fulfilling the requirements they expect.
Q. What are some opportunities you see in the near future for MCS?
A. Our biggest opportunity is continuing to find ways that we can act as an extension of our clients, to find ways to support them, so that they can focus on their core competencies, which is working with customers. We have recently added property registrations and utility processing and we also see title and valuation as great opportunities for us as well.
In addition, with vendor management continuing to be a focus of regulators, having fewer vendors is better for our clients. But choosing MCS is more than just consolidation on their part — we add a true quality component, which is why our clients continue to choose us to provide additional services. MCS has developed a large quality department so that we can be the best at what we do.