A streamlined process
Right away, VanDyk worked with the Compass account management team to address the items that cost the most time in their loan sale process. VanDyk leveraged the eligibility capabilities within CompassPoint to model their delivery preferences to take control of which loans are sent to which investor.
Eric Bridges used the example of a loan with a DTI >45, pointing out that while certain investors might be willing to buy that loan under their guidelines, the operational process of purchasing that loan can be onerous. “Maybe the investor will ultimately buy that loan, maybe they will not. We know it will be an operational challenge either way, so we can build in those kinds of rules and it’s been the biggest time-saver for us,” said Bridges.
Working in conjunction with the Compass Analytics team, VanDyk planned the transition to selling loans themselves. After jointly selling the first bid tapes, VanDyk took over the process in its entirety. Remembering that inaugural loan sale, Bridges added his team was “almost in awe of how much information [they] had and the kind of time [they] saved.”
Bridges continued, “It was night and day in terms of the control we had and the clarity of our decisions. We immediately recognized the difference between thinking ‘yes, I think that looks right,’ versus actually knowing that everything is set up exactly how you wanted it to be.”
Barnes noted a marked increase in confidence after taking over the loan sale process “Previously, we would only see the end result and not know what took place to get us there. Now, I can call the investor’s desk and say to them, `If you improve 2 basis points, you’re going to win another $2 million of volume.’ That is huge. We are able to control and direct our business like never before.”
Improved external relationships and internal communication
Above it all, the information available to VanDyk resulted in deeper investor relationships. “Now we can go to our investor meetings and actually talk about volume specifics, why they got the volume they did,” said Bridges. “It was a game changer for us, and we definitely see a lot more positive feedback from them.”
Because VanDyk is now directly communicating with their investors on a regular basis, they can answer questions with much more certainty. The improved relationships also yielded better incentives from investors, as well as insight into the types of loans that investors are most interested in buying. Having this insight has helped VanDyk to optimize post-closing processes and made the entire secondary team more efficient, simply by knowing more about the investors.
“Using CompassPoint to sell our loans to investors has allowed us to engage in deeper conversations with investors, conversations that used to consist of a lot of guesswork, if they were happening at all,” explains Bridges.
The value of control
VanDyk has also enjoyed dividends from their new processes in unexpected places.
Year-end audit requests were simplified as VanDyk simply pointed to their own policies and procedures, rather than interpreting the loan sale policy of a third party.
Bridges also saw improvements to internal communication with senior management. “We cannot emphasize enough the responsiveness of the information. Now, I can just click two buttons and I've got the report that tells me what I need to know. I no longer have to send an email or make a call and hope that the person on the other end is not working with someone else already. It's really a lifesaver. Honestly, I can be on the phone with my CFO and get him whatever he needs in two minutes.”
Looking back, Barnes succinctly summed up his feelings. “We are now in control of the hedge cost, being in the driver’s seat. If someone were on the fence about making a similar transition, I would advise them to run an informal SWOT analysis — What are your opportunities? What are the threats you’re facing? When we asked ourselves these questions, the answers overwhelmingly indicated that we need to be in control. We chose Compass because the benefits far outweighed the cost.”