Here a Rush, There a Rush, Everywhere a Rush, Rush

Mortgage and Lending with Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, NMLS #138061 MMCD #1141

Here a Rush, There a Rush, Everywhere a Rush, Rush



     Volume is up.  That means turntimes are up.  Along with stress levels.  Deadlines are approaching everywhere.  The only thing that typically doesn't go up when volume goes up is levels of customer service.  And I don't care if the BBB and JD Power had a baby together and it was a lender named "Service", when volume spikes, service slips - it's simple economics, Mortgage rushreally - supply and demand.  There is a huge demand for loans, and a limited supply of employees trained to handle loan files.  A lender has 2 options - either have current staff work 20 hour days to mitigate the slippage in service levels & turntimes, or hire more people (either new hires for the company, or contract workers, usually underwriters or processors).  Either approach has the same problems - new hires need to learn on the go, and sometimes it's a bumpy ride, and even seasoned contract workers need to learn the lenders processes and unique operations. 



     Recently, one of my purchase loans that needed to close in 3 weeks (only way borrower could get her offer accepted) was assigned to a new processor.  I'd never worked with him before, and I was super nervous.  That anxiety quickly turned to gratitude as he hit the ground running, excelled in communications, and made what should have been a stressful process for everyone involved a smooth ride to the settlement table.  3 weeks on the job, he had 30+ files to work on, and he nailed it. *I tipped my cap, gave him a standing ovation, and applauded until he made a curtain call*



     Another loan needed a rush just yesterday.  An FHA streamline, which had to close by the end of the month to avoid interest being charged to the borrower for the entire month of April (have I mentioned before that HUD likes ripping people off?).  As we approached the deadline, I involved our operations team, gave them a heads up that closing/scheduling would be seeing this file last minute and it required immediate attention, and had our processing manager rush what would normally be a 4-5 day part of the loan process through in less than 48 hours.  We'll be doing settlement tomorrow and the loan will fund this month. 



     I wish I could say the "rush" stopped with these 2, but I have 3 other files ongoing that are operating on an ASAP closing date.  Especially in the purchase market where inventory shortages & bidding wars are forcing offers of 30 day closes or less, nearly everything requires a rush to get things done on the schedule everyone else wants/needs to keep.



     So what's my point?  Well, there are 2.  For one, I want to publicly acknowledge the amazing operations team that is working behind the scenes that bust their butts so that our clients don't see too much of an increase in turntimes or slip in service despite how crazy things really are.  My team is AMAZING, from applications to processing to underwriting to closing.  Our CEO consistently notes that the key to our success and rapid growth as a national lender is the people on board working as a team to accomplish our goal of making mortgages easy.  I agree.



     The second point is to shed some light on how operations work for a mortgage company in times like these when rates are down and so many markets are seller's markets.  We have rate locks to meet deadlines on (shorter rate lock terms mean better rates, so we try to get things done quick to save people money), HUD guidelines that force us to squeeze loans with FHA payoffs in by the end of the month, and purchase deadlines, many of which are less than 30 days from the date of a contract.  We DO understand that your loan needs a rush.  We DO think your loan is incredibly important.  We DO want you to feel like you're our only client.  I just hope you'll realize that there are many, many others that need a rush, and we are striving to make every client feel like our only one.  In times like these, patience is truly a virtue.  Some understanding goes a long way, too : )



Here's some food for thought - you're faced with 2 loans, but you can only rush one to close on time:


     Your first client is a young, single first time home buyer, currently living rent free with family, and you have a closing/contract settlement date set for the next day.  Movers are scheduled (and paid for), utilities have been scheduled for transfer, seller is using the proceeds from the sale to purchase a new home the following day.



     Your second is a buyer/seller couple with young children that's using proceeds from a morning sale of their home (they are vacating for good in the morning and their buyers are moving in in the afternoon) to consummate their new purchase in the afternoon.  Though a tight timeline, since their home will be sold they need to move into their new house the same day they sell their old one.



     Let's assume your closing department is booked solid, and there will be no time to possibly get loan packages together and wires sent out for both clients - you have to choose one.  Both clients were perfect - they returned documents on time, and did everything they needed to on their end - the delay and reason both files are down to the wire is because of delays from the IRS in getting needed documentation to the lender in a timely manner.  Which loan do you choose to use a rush on and close as scheduled?



I know my answer, though it's not an easy situation, and I'm curious which one you would choose to close on time? 



These kinds of scenarios come up frequently, and though it's never easy, sometimes they are just decisions that need to be made.




Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Les & Sarah Oswald 03/26/2015 03:50 AM
  2. John DL Arendsen 03/31/2015 11:06 PM
Mortgage / Finance
The Lounge at Active Rain
Bartender, Make it a Double
loan process
rush requests
mortgage operations

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John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

Karen - me too, thanks for the comment!  It's a positive & negative - tough when things go wrong, but the flipside is we get to be there for people during such an important moment in their lives.


Jon - glad you've got top notch help on the financing side, that's the way it should be.


Mary - ha!  Hope you enjoyed your break and didn't rush back ; )  Thanks for the comment.


M.C. - thanks for stopping by!  I think knowing eachother's business can help understanding on all sides and keep cooler heads when deadlines approach.


Sylvia Jonathan ugh!  Sounds like a lack of communication up front from the lender, that's the worst!  That is far too long to wait for a denial - may have even been something an underwriter could have looked at without submitting the file.  I hope your buyer is back in the game soon!


Dörte - thank you!  I know one wins em' all.  We try to get as close as we can, and fortunately my team helps to make sure the vast majority of our loans are smooth sailing.


Pat - everyone working as a team toward the same goal keeps everything moving efficiently.  Agents, lenders, title, etc. Thank you for the comment!


Laura - thank you!  Appreciate you stopping by and commenting.


Kimo Jarrett no one on my staff fumbled the ball (the scenarios in this post were hypothetical).  We do have a file though that's ready for clear to close but we can't get tax transcripts back from the IRS - usually a 2 day process is going on 2 weeks now...only other solution is to have the borrower use the IRS website, and they haven't been able to log in.  Sometimes it's no one's fault and we still run into deadlines.  There have also been SEVERAL times when I tell people up front that meeting a deadline will be very, very tough and I can't make any guarantee.....they still submit the loan file - when we're crazy busy, every other lender is, too.  Thanks for stopping by.


Bill Morrow love that approach.  End of the month is usually difficult and since FHA refinances HAVE to close/fund by end of month, it does make that time more difficult to request rushes and squeeze things in.  Sounds like you cover all your bases in making the process stress free for your clients.


Carolyn - everything is certainly local.  I work in several states, and in some, things are crazy and there are bidding wars everywhere.  In others, things are quiet.  Thank you for your comment.


Jeff Dowler CRS that team effort is the most important part.  Usually when everyone's on the same page, things work out fine.  When people try to work independently of everyone else that's involved, the lack of communication often causes problems.  Thanks for the comment.


Rodney Mason I've seen that too, just not to that extent...every day counts so not moving dates when there are a few days of negotiations can really set us back.  Get to google and seek out that HOA info, that's the last thing you need is a questionnaire delaying settlement.  Best of luck as you sail these crazy waters.



Mar 27, 2015 01:06 AM #59
Rodney Mason
Guaranteed Rate - Atlanta, GA
AL, GA, SC, & TN

I wish it were that easy on the HOA.  The Seller has never lived in the property, the HOA just changed management companies last month, and the Listing Agent is trying to find the new contact info.   Never a dull moment.

Mar 27, 2015 01:15 AM #60
John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

Rodney Mason oh man, hope that works out, hate when things like that are beyond our control.  Oh well, we do what we can, right?

Mar 27, 2015 01:33 AM #61
Jon Kolsky
Kolsky Realty & Management - Long Beach, CA
Licensed California Real Estate Broker

John Meussner ~ I have put you to the test and I've seen you in action.... & not only am I so impressed by your professionalism, I am also just as impressed by the speed in which you work... You make it your business for everything to be a priority and you ALWAYS put your client first... 

Mar 27, 2015 04:24 AM #62
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

I have no idea which one I would go with.  I know busy working is better than busy marketing for work.

Mar 27, 2015 05:28 AM #63
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning John,

What a great post giving us a peek on "behind the scenes" work that goes on to produce loan documents to a closing on time in these rushed scenarios. Of course you don't want to choose between these two clients but if a choice has to be made I'd go with the family with the kids only because the single gal is living with her parents and has a fall back position.

Mar 27, 2015 09:54 PM #64
Marshall Brown
Mid America Inspection Services, LLC - Fargo, ND

Rush is something that impacts all of us in one way or another. As home inspectors we work in an area where there are four Realtor Associations. One of these requires the agent to be on property for the entire inspection. I have always recommended that but making it a requirement means that the Realtor often has other commitments and subtlety applies pressure on the inspector to hurry. If I remember correctly the NAR site used to say an inspection would take about 2 1/2 hours. To get referrals in that area an inspector is expected to be done in an hour and a half or less.  I always wonder what gets missed in a "quickie"  or rushed inspection.

Mar 28, 2015 02:23 AM #65
Mark Artesani
Keller Williams Realty - Fountain Valley, CA
Huntington & Newport Beach, Fountain Valley Homes

I am amazed how some deal come together.

Mar 28, 2015 04:03 AM #66
Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

It is nice that you took the time to recognize the job done by some behind the scenes people that are often villanized.  As for HUD, yes, they do like to steal

Mar 28, 2015 05:22 AM #67
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

John, your industry has endured so many changes and new pressures.  I appreciate the hard work that goes into the lending process.

Mar 28, 2015 04:59 PM #68
Rob Arnold
Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. - Altamonte Springs, FL
Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F

There is so much unncecessary pressure in this business.  Occasionally a deadline is a real one like the scenario you mention of the couple selling one house and moving into another and trying to synchronize it all. But most of the time it just self imposed deadlines designed to give everyone gray hairs for no reason at all. 

Mar 29, 2015 12:04 AM #69
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Vision Quest Realty - Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Excellent post and deserves a feature (glad it was featured) I would select the 2nd couple (ones with children) if I had to make a choice especially since the first couple are living rent free with parents unlike the first couple.

Mar 30, 2015 08:55 AM #70
Jennifer Shenbaum
Jennifer Buys Houses - Redondo Beach, CA

I just had to call a buyer's agent today to make sure we were on track.  Turns out we are more on track than I had perceived.  Glad I called to talk and get to the heart of the matter quickly.  Hopefully, we continue to move towards a solid closing in two weeks.

Mar 31, 2015 09:29 AM #71
John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

Thanks all, there have been some really great comments and discussion here, really appreciate all the input.


Jennifer Shenbaum always nice when things come together ahead of schedule.  Good luck with a closing that is smooth sailing : )

Mar 31, 2015 12:53 PM #72
John DL Arendsen
Crest Backyard Homes "ADU" dealer & Contractor

Tough choices but my heart and moral turpitude as a Father of 5 and Grandfather of 14 would naturally and inherently have to lean towards the family with children vs the young single living at home.

Mar 31, 2015 11:04 PM #73
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

So much pressure and I am being told by lenders that they need more time. It makes me wonder what they were doing the last 45 days. Just saying, and I know it could be the buyers drug their feet.

Mar 31, 2015 11:35 PM #74
John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

Thanks John DL Arendsen that would be my choice as well.  I don't want to put kids in a tough spot or parents who already have enough on their plate.


Debbie Reynolds that is strange, 45 days should be more than enough time to wrap things up, even with heavy volume.  Hopefully you don't run into a rush closing situation. 

Apr 01, 2015 02:58 AM #75
steve earnshaw

Unfortunately, we create much of this stress ourselves by allowing the expectations (which we enforce) of our buyers and sellers to dictate unrealistic time lines, especially when most of these process steps are beyond our control. Really, a morning sale and afternoon purchase with movers scheduled and anticipations high all around! Shame on us. Stuff happens. Closings are delayed. We as professionals have a duty to our client to manage those expectations and set realistic time frames. Why do we continue to represent ourselves as superstars and miracle workers? When we show professional respect for all the parities involved, we can call ourselves professionals. Until then, we earn the reputation we deserve.

Apr 02, 2015 02:20 AM #76
Donna & Larry Johnson
Keller Williams Real Estate - West Chester, PA
Chester & Delaware County

it is that time of the year! Everyone is trying to grab all the business that they can. Take a breather and try to eliminate those mistakes that happen when we all rush around. Happy Easter!

Apr 03, 2015 01:41 AM #77
Winston Heverly
Winston Realty, Inc. - Atlantis, FL

A super post I came across among the many archieves and frequent bloggers. Thanks for being apart of Active Rain.-

Apr 11, 2015 11:54 AM #78
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