Thursday, July 29, 2010

Brand You.

We all market every moment of every day. We are each walking, talking advertisements for our own brands as well as our employer's. That is why it is so important to represent yourself with the utmost integrity at all times.

Every action no matter how innocuous it might seem will have a definite reaction. In a consumer based business such as the mortgage industry, that has an awfully big black eye--it is mission critical to conduct yourself with professionalism in all of your interactions.

People buy from people they trust. Building that trust might take some time, but if you have a foundation of "do rightness" you will win it. Karma is at play and will impact you in this business for sure. Live a life of doing good and treating people well and you have nothing to worry about!

Be a brand that people want to buy from!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Goals & Expectations In A Volatile Market

Mortgage rates continue to hit "all time" lows and although this is something we all hope and wish for, bankers must be cognisant of how this volatile rate environment can/will affect their business.

Is volume being maximized?
What about margins?
Are CRM campaigns in place?
Is the current pipeline at risk of renegotiations or competition?
Are ops departments adequately staffed?
What happens if/when rates increase and volume slows?

And what about short term cash flow?
Are investor turn times slowing?
Are there large payroll cycles coming?
Are warehouse lines tied up?

I could go on and on...

Don't get me wrong - a drop in rates and an increase in volume are good problems to have. My point is that in volatile times you must be able to maximize your upside while limiting potential risk or exposure. These swings in the market have ripple effects through an entire operation. Is your business on auto-pilot? Don't get lulled into a false sense of comfort because volume is up - planning and foresight is essential.

Matchbox has been through these cycles before and is adept at looking around the corner and avoiding surprises.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Hedging, Mandatory Delivery and Cash Flows

From the title above I hope correspondent lenders know where I'm going with this post. If you already hedge and deliver loans via mandatory trades or are thinking about taking this step, ask yourself this question: Are you aware, and capable of managing the cash flow constraints this platform may put on your firm?

Bankers active in this space know what I mean as they've been sending some hefty wires in May, June and July.

Here's the concern in a volatile market when mortgage rates drop and the MBS market rallies:

-Volume increases, and therefore so does payroll
-Investors are overwhelmed with volume, slowing turn times for review/purchases
-Approved and Closed loans are "in the money"
-Hedge positions with the broker/dealers are "out of the money"

Large amounts are due to broker/dealers on settlement date and due to sales on payroll. Unfortunately when investor turn time slows, these expenses are incurred prior to the loan sales and can/will put lenders in a precarious position.

I can't stress enough the importance of lenders truly understanding how the changes and volatility in the market effect cash flows for the business. Relying on accrual accounting could be dangerous. Hedging is about reducing risk and exposure--not increasing it!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Time To Securitize?

When rates fall, investors typically fatten their margins. Why? Volume increases and turntimes slow; they end up with more business than they can even handle. The result? Independent lenders complaining about service given pricing which isn't quite reflective of the true MBS market.

If you can, now is the time to think about securitizing. Creating a strong, and likely sticky portfolio when rates are low is ideal! If you think you're not ready, ask yourself, if not now, when?

Through a securitizations and servicing, you will:
-take advantage of strong MBS pricing with no maximum. Ginnie 4s trading at 101.5-101.9 and 5s at 106.5!
-maintain healthy allocation across investors
-build servicing portfolio with benefits like cross selling, CRM campaigns, reliable income stream and run rates etc
-improve warehouse line management and associated costs
-strengthen financials
maintain internal margins while adding servicing value

Want to learn more about securitizing loans and retaining servicing? Contact Match Box today.