Magazine article Mortgage Banking

Gomez Scorecard Analysis: Banks Gain Online Mortgage Momentum

Magazine article Mortgage Banking

Gomez Scorecard Analysis: Banks Gain Online Mortgage Momentum

Article excerpt

FROM NEW WEB SITE FUNCTIONALITY through more automated client services, bricks-and-clicks institutions retain a leg up on our Summer 2001 Mortgage Scorecard, Gomez's Summer 2001 Internet Mortgage Scorecard[TM] ranked the top 15 online mortgage firms from more than 300 online real estate firms tracked. Ranked firms provide online rates, applications, 24x7 loan status and originate mortgages. Since the last Scorecard in February 2001, the Scorecard analysis shows that leading bricks-and-clicks providers continue their efforts to use the Web to increase mortgage originations and automate the servicing process. Significant elements of the rankings are as follows:

* IndyMac retained the top ranking with a new Web site and state-of-the-art underwriting technology. At IndyMac, consumers enjoy a wide spectrum of online loans, including conforming, jumbo, nonconforming, home-equity and construction products. Pricing remains very competitive, as evidenced by lowest-cost guarantees, closing-cost disclosures and the posting of competitor rates on the site. To facilitate the origination of mortgages online, IndyMac offers e-MITS[R], its proprietary, Web-based, real-time underwriting and risk-based pricing system introduced in 1999. e-MITS allows brokers to submit applications, receive decisions and lock in rates in as little as three minutes. This system also allows IndyMac to automate the refinance process, prepopulating application pages imbedded within personalized e-mail alerts to existing customers.

* Leading banks focus on automating servicing and retaining existing customers. Roughly 6o percent of consumers surveyed by Gomez report they want their mortgage originator to service their loan postclosing. In fact, 53 percent want to be able to review and pay their monthly principal and interest (P&I) online. In response, Countrywide uses technology and sophisticated data-mining techniques. Once a loan has funded and a borrower becomes a member of the servicing portfolio, a secure Web page is created that provides 24x7 loan balance and payment status, which reduces customer administration costs. Electronic payment options over the Web and through electronic data interchange (EDI) transmission are other automation techniques that enhance convenience and reduce costs. To ensure that existing customers receive personally relevant time- and money-savings messages about beneficial products, alerts can be personalized on the customer's individual servicing Web page. …

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