Written by Aaron King
In this day and age, convenience is king. That’s why remote mortgage closings—loans consummated at a location of the borrower’s choosing with the help of a notary—are on the rise.
In fact, Snapdocs, a modern technology platform that simplifies these out-of-office mortgage closings, has grown 150 percent year-to-date and now facilitates over 50,000 remote mortgage closings per month. Does the reverse mortgage market have a piece of that pie? Absolutely.
Reverse mortgages require an elevated level of service, patience and care. Because these loans are designed specifically for the financial needs of seniors 62 years and older, offering out-of-office closings as an option is perhaps even more important with reverse mortgages than with traditional mortgages. Due to their age, reverse mortgage borrowers may be away from home, traveling during retirement or, in unfortunate cases, unable to travel due to health issues. Whether a mobile notary meets with a borrower while he or she is on the road or in the comfort of his or her own home, remote closings are a valuable convenience that caters to this special demographic. Additionally, unlike the one-third of borrowers of traditional mortgages who are first-time homebuyers, according to the National Association of Realtors, it’s not reverse mortgage borrowers’ first rodeo. With understanding through experience of the process, many do not feel the need to drive across town to a lender’s or title company’s office to sign on the dotted line. To boot, reverse mortgage loans typically finance closing costs and fees, making capitalizing on the convenience of a mobile mortgage closing a no-brainer.
Lenders and title companies are elevating seniors’ consumer experience with reverse mortgages using modern technology. Today, fixing the back-end of the mortgage process (so the borrower isn’t being asked for the same financial statement multiple times, for instance) is a key upgrade. Additionally, to ensure that the remote closing experience with reverse mortgages is well-handled by a qualified signing agent, it’s critical that settlement service companies utilize a dynamic database of notary profiles to enlist the help of only highly rated third-party vendors.
Thinking mobile notaries are taking advantage of the opportunity to promote their experience with reverse mortgage closings via their online profiles, which helps them attract more specialized business. On the Snapdocs platform, for example, thousands of notaries tout their expertise with reverse closings, as they recognize that reverse mortgages are a good foot in the door with settlement companies. On leading-edge technology platforms, lenders, title companies and signing services can now easily filter for these reverse mortgage specialists to make sure they are matching the consumer with the best possible closing experience. While parents have long been able to pinpoint well-reviewed restaurants that are good for kids” using Yelp, dynamic databases tailor-made for the mortgage business are a reality for the first time. And data on notary performance history is a game changer.
With a consumer experience race underway in the mortgage industry, convenience is vital to the overall health of competitors in the business. To get ahead, lenders and title companies need to embrace modern technology to streamline the closing experience for reverse mortgages and deliver the level of service that seniors deserve. Every step of the process counts.
This guest article by Snapdocs CEO Aaron King was originally published in the November issue of The Reverse Review and can be found on the publication's website here.