Return to Sender: Best Practices to Improve Your Signed Disclosure Ratios

(Mortgage) Permanent link

 

With greater competition for fewer borrowers, mortgage lenders are finding it more critical than ever to keep the loan origination process moving quickly and efficiently.

One of the best ways to accomplish this is to ensure your financial institution has the correct programs and processes in place to expedite the return receipt of signed disclosures. Once the signed disclosures are submitted, the lending process has officially begun—transforming potential prospects into full-fledged borrowers.

Provide Prompt and Compliant Disclosures

When it comes to disclosures, maintaining compliant documentation and strictly adhering to the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) mandated guidelines must be top-of-mind for financial institutions. The right disclosures must be delivered in the correct format within the proper time frame—all while remaining compliant with federal, state and investor requirements.


However, traditional paper-based processes for creating and delivering RESPA disclosures are time-consuming and costly from a regulatory, resource and financial standpoint. Today’s consumers are used to instant gratification and demand immediate response times. By eliminating the need to print, assemble, package and ship document packages, electronic disclosures can expedite the entire process to help financial institutions lock potential borrowers in more quickly. A good approach to providing prompt disclosures and ensuring their delivery combines electronic disclosure technology (document preparation and secure electronic delivery) with paper fulfillment as a back up.


Because e-Disclosures use the immediacy of electronic delivery to provide disclosures to borrowers, financial institutions stay visible during the critical first few hours of the transaction, increasing their chances of capturing indecisive applicants. And, in today’s fast-paced world, e-Disclosures are the best way to provide technology-savvy borrowers with the immediacy and customer service they’ve grown accustomed to.

 

Integrated Fulfillment Options 

 
After electronic disclosures are generated and securely sent, the borrower’s response should be monitored via an electronic delivery system. If the borrower does not consent within a given amount of time, the system alerts the financial institution and automatically transitions the process from electronic delivery to paper fulfillment—all within the 72-hour RESPA-mandated timeframe.


Whether paper disclosures are necessary because a package timed-out or simply requested by the borrower, the financial institution’s next steps should be to automatically route the documents to a SAS 70 certified fulfillment center for printing, fulfillment and mailing.


When selecting a print fulfillment vendor, financial institutions should look for a provider who is not only meeting compliance requirements, but also has extensive security controls in place, such as around-the-clock video monitoring, secure print areas and a disaster recovery contingency plan in place, to ensure customer data is uncompromised.


In addition to e-disclosures, a fully branded, print disclosure package is another way to improve your return ratios. The financial institution should provide borrowers with an easy-to-navigate, fully branded disclosure package with instructional sheets, clearly outlining the necessary steps for signing and returning the documents as well as a return envelope. The use of sticky-tabs and highlighting are also particularly effective for showing borrowers exactly where signatures are required. All of these features not only help eliminate the guesswork often involved with loan documentation for borrowers, but significantly expedite the entire disclosure process.

 

Conclusion 

 

While many borrowers are frustrated by the lack of efficiency, productivity and convenience currently found in the mortgage process, there are ways to make your financial institution stand out from your competitors. Providing prompt and compliant disclosures and taking advantage of integrated fulfillment options all play a key role in making the loan disclosure process more appealing to borrowers—while driving more business to your financial institution.

 

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Authored by Dean Polsfut, Senior Product Manager, Wolters Kluwer Financial Services

 

Posted by Tiffany Winter at 08/18/2011 10:43:41 AM | 


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