Lunch & Learn: Are appraisals the next big opportunity in mortgage fulfillment?

This Lunch & Learn for mortgage lenders will explore the evolution of the appraisal process as well as opportunities for innovation.

Rohit Chopra pleads the fifth on QM rule

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Rohit Chopra, in his first report to Congress, answered for decisions made by his predecessor, and provided some indication of his priorities going forward.

How to simplify the appraisal process for everyone in today’s hot market

While the world might be slowly getting back to normal, the housing boom is far from over. Appraisers need to make sure they have the right tools to manage the high demand.

Which core segments of brokerage make the most money

Today’s HousingWire Daily is a RealTrending crossover episode. It features Tracey Velt, editorial director at HW Media Company RealTrends, who interviews Chris Kelly and Christian Wallace.


Polly gets its footing with $15 million Series A round

Proptech firm plans to use funding to scale up engineering capabilities

San-Francisco based tech startup Polly (recently rebranded from PollyEx) raised $15 million in a Series A funding round led by seasoned venture capitalist firm 8VC, the company announced on Thursday. Other investors in this round included Menlo Ventures, Conversion Capital, Meritech Capital, Fifth Wall and Base10 Partners.

The company started as mortgage loan trading exchange and last year launched a product pricing and eligibility engine for loan originators. According to Polly, it is now processing tens of thousands of lock requests and nearly $3 billion in loans every month.

Polly’s founder and CEO Adam Carmel told HousingWire that the company plans to use this funding to scale up its engineering team in a “major way,” as well additional talent to its sales and marketing teams. Carmel also said this round will assist in future product developments including expansion of its recently released analytics feature.

Carmel integrated its Loan Trading Exchange product with Freddie Mac’s Cash-Released XChange in 2020 and Freddie’s Loan Selling Advisor in 2019, the year Polly was founded. The platform essentially uses cloud-based technology that connects buyers and sellers of mortgage loans through its API integration.

The company also released its version of a product, pricing and eligibility engine (PPE) in September – a bold strategy in an extremely competitive market that includes data analytics giant Black Knight and its Optimal Blue Loansifter.

“Our ultimate goal, what we’re trying to solve for, is to take things that are effectively offline like spreadsheets, emails, phone calls, kind of the former way of doing business, and bringing it into a single, unified, orchestrated platform that really enables our customers success,” Carmel said.

As part of the latest funding round, 8VC founding partner Alex Kolicich and Meritech Capital partner Max Motschwiller will join Polly’s board of directors. Carmel said he and Kolicich have known each other for some time and was looking for ways to work with him that eventually led to Polly’s Series A.

But 8VC is no stranger to the mortgage market. The firm invested in both digital giants Qualia and Blend in previous years. Both companies achieved “unicorn” status in 2020.

“There is a technology challenge that mortgage lenders and investors are not well positioned to solve on their own,” said Kolicich. “Polly’s loan pricing and settlement platform is changing the way the entire mortgage capital markets industry operates.”

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