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Default Services Sector Buzzing

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The annual mortgage banker servicing conference has a rush of default servicing announcements hitting the wire. If new offerings are any indication, business is booming for default service providers.

Fannie Mae increased its foreclosure attorney fees in Maryland, according to Servicing Guide Announcement SVC-2011-01. The fee was increased from $950 to $1,300 as of Feb. 1. The fee includes the combined attorney’s fees, notary’s fees and the trustee’s commission or statutory fee.

Fannie implemented the Clarifire application as the technology solution for its servicers to use in complying with the foreclosure pre-filing mediation process mandated by the Florida Supreme Court’s administrative order, eMason announced in December. The Web-based application consolidates into one platform an automated workflow for servicers and business partners involved in the mediation process such as retained attorney firms, mediation case managers and counselors.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development deployed the REO performance evaluation model developed by Walzak Consulting Inc. in its Management and Marketing III program for HUD field service manager and asset manager contractors, an announcement early last month said. The model measures and tracks the performance of HUD’s REO vendors in meeting and following HUD’s contractual requirements and operational procedures.

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo being held in the Dallas area started Tuesday. The event runs until Thursday and had a flood of news releases being issued by default service providers.

Among the announcements was one released by DepotPoint Inc. about a platform for lenders, servicers and asset managers to aggregate and analyze data from multiple sources. The Bellevue, Wash., company said that DataConnect resolves the leading cause of inefficiency in default management: disparate systems. It reportedly enables aggregation and interpretation of data from multiple sources about or related to a property.

“In a typical default scenario, various parties are often talking to each other from their own perspective when it comes to information about the underlying real estate asset,” DepotPoint President and Chief Executive Officer Joe Filoseta said in the statement. “As a result, meaningful data is often neglected or underutilized.”

Last month, DepotPoint touted its new client LRES Corp., which deployed the TrackPoint REO solution. The company was reportedly able to implement the offering within three weeks after an initial demonstration.

A pre-foreclosure review module for the DecisionReady Compliance Suite operates like a compliance quality control checklist and helps servicers be confident that they have taken the required steps, a statement Tuesday said. The platform contains industry-specific knowledge, and it allows servicers to layer on applications from the compliance suite for specific lines of business — including home retention and foreclosures.

Servicers can better manage real-estate-owned inventory with three new products announced Friday by Equator. The new modules are for loan segmentation, REO segmentation and invoice management.

By using the loan segmentation product on “the 60-120 day bucket of delinquency, servicers will be able to route the right loan to the right person early on in the delinquency to insure optimal outcome for the loan,” Equator Chief Operating Officer John Vella stated in the release. The REO product helps to herd properties through the most efficient resolution channel.

Equator reported in December that it services had initiated more than 500,000 short sales and led to the sale of more than $100 billion in assets.

Mortgage servicers can create and set up their own business rules to more efficiently manage the default process with their attorneys and other vendors using the LenStar Default Management Service, ISGN said last week. New features include vendor integration that provides real-time data exchange between servicers and their attorneys’ case management systems. In addition, servicers can manage their vendor network through workgroups, bulletin boards, messaging and the approvals process.

A new online repair cost estimator has been added to the broker price opinion services of In an announcement Tuesday, the Westminster, Colo.-based firm said the service generates accurate repair estimates in minutes. Among repair costs estimated are lawn mowing, winterization, board-ups and replacement of appliances. Also on the menu are debris removal and patio and driveway repairs.

New inspection services from Field Asset Services are available for occupancy, pre-sale and compliance, a press release Tuesday said. The company, which boasts a network of more than 6,000 inspectors, says it services more than $7.3 billion in residential assets.

A few months earlier, Nationwide Management Services Inc. said its field agent certification utilizes an FDCPA compliant training program.

A strategic partnership announced Tuesday between Default Resource and Mortgage Specialists International will reportedly empower Default Resource to complete its “suite of best-in-class products and services for managing distressed property.”

A 20-month short-sale pilot program from Foreclosure Response Team tracked the performance of affiliate real estate agents throughout 28 states, according to a report released late last year. The company, which claims to process tasks for “six of the top national mortgage servicers,” said that the results indicated a national closing ratio of 48 percent, with a closing timeframe of 99 days from contract to purchase.

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