Uday Devalla: Mortgage Servicers Can Boost Retention, Engagement with TechnologyDecember 1, 2020
PERSON OF THE WEEK: Mortgage lenders have made great strides in automating the origination process and delivering a smooth and intuitive customer experience for borrowers. Those that do it well are winning more repeat business, as well as attracting new customers through online reviews and word of mouth.
Mortgage servicers have also made great strides in using technology to smooth the customer experience, but the pandemic and subsequent wave of defaults has shown that there is still plenty of room for improvement. What’s more, servicers are having a hard time retaining borrowers, as borrowers take advantage of record low mortgage rates and refinance in droves.
Software firm Sagent is helping servicers deliver a better customer experience – thus helping them weather periods of economic distress and retain more borrowers. The company’s platform not only acts as a servicing system of record, with full default management capabilities, it also powers customer care, engagement, and retention so servicers can transform “customer for life” from tagline to reality.
To learn more about what features and functionality servicers should expect from their platforms, in the context of today’s shifting environment, MortgageOrb recently interviewed Uday Devalla, chief technology officer at Sagent.
Q: What does consumer-first modernization of mortgage servicing mean?
Devalla: Historically, servicing was more about risk management and ROI optimization. Now, it’s about the lifetime customer experience. Online culture makes consumers expect convenient digital experiences where they can run their life from their phone. Mortgage originators got this right over the past eight years.
Now, servicers have started to prioritize a consumer-first, lifetime retention approach, which increases both MSR and lifetime customer values. For instance, servicers armed with a proper servicing system of record that utilizes real-time borrower data can help their customers identify money-saving opportunities early on in the refinance process, before they begin to look elsewhere.
Q: What does a modern mortgage servicing tech stack include and why is each tool important?
Devalla: At its core, a modern mortgage servicing tech stack needs to empower borrowers with the ability to make informed decisions throughout the life of their loan.
It’s important to remember that the borrower experience isn’t limited to any single loan — borrowers will also have questions when they want to refinance, when their warranty expires, and when they want to sell their home. Servicers must be prepared to answer these questions within a singular, intuitive platform. For non-performing loans, servicers need an all-in-one default servicing system that encompasses everything from delinquencies to bankruptcy to foreclosure.
That said, self-service is critical when homeowners are in hardship. The ability to take control can be empowering during times of stress.
Q: Do you believe originations…