SoFi, loanDepot and Quicken Loans sit in a small cohort of lenders known for pushing the envelope in the mortgage industry and spurring innovation.

The three, while technically competitors, remain cordial over the years, consistently showing up to the same conferences to give their insight on the secret to mortgage lending success.  

Even the Goldman Sachs housing and consumer finance conference the three have consistently attended together. It’s routine now.

They once again wrapped up the conference as the final group of the day.

Mike Cagney, CEO of SoFi, sat out this time around as Paul Fielding, SoFi’s head of capital markets, filled in instead, but the vibe from the three was the same. They are three veteran mortgage executives at this point, and while each of their respective companies are ranked near the top of the industry, they’re quick to remind folks that this is no easy industry.

The three gave a standard update on their companies, products and regulatory challenges, not citing anything too out of the ordinary for conference speeches.

Anthony Hsieh, chairman and CEO of loanDepot, however, did reference a comment he made sitting in the same seat last year.  

Hsieh said last year that regulation was a barrier to entry into the business. People are eye-balling entering the mortgage industry because of $9 billion of untapped potential market share, Hsieh said at the time. 

Now a year later, Hsieh added to it, stating technology is now a new barrier to entry — no longer just capital and regulatory obstacles.

And there's data to back his claim. The Mortgage Bankers Association forecasts $1.63 trillion in total mortgage originations in 2017. So it's true that more people want in, but greater investment in technology is becoming an ever-increasing necessity.