The Pandemic & the Real Estate Industry | Diamond & Diamond
  • Thursday, 06 May 2021

The Pandemic & the Real Estate Industry | Diamond and Diamond

From wearing masks to curbside pickups, the world has changed significantly over the past 18 months. As a result, so has the mortgage industry. There are new trends throughout the industry that will permanently change the institutional mortgage application and closing process. These emerging trends focus on clients never having to leave the comfort and safety of their own homes. The online model is now the most dominant. The online models have in fact become so good that you can access mortgage funds for a Refinance or a Purchase simply from your desktop or mobile device.

Mortgage brokerages have adopted all forms on online application and underwriting platforms. On many of their websites we now see how easy it is for their potential clients to communicate with the mortgage broker, apply for a mortgage, upload relevant documentation and get approval – with just a few mouse clicks or finger taps. With the ability to electronically submit tax returns and other documentary evidence, clients can complete an application via online means rather than having to visit their brokerage. The sophistication of these applications and underwriting platforms have changed the industry in that mortgage brokers can now take applications from anywhere within the jurisdiction they are licenced in. There is no geographic limitation for brokerages any longer. With digital ID’s now becoming more prevalent, the requirement for ID verification is also moving into the digital age. The delays associated with (pre) approvals has all but disappeared as well, giving mortgage shoppers the comfort of knowing very quickly what they can and can not afford to borrow.

Legal closing processes have also undergone change. Lawyers who practice in the area of real estate have now fully adopted online methods of signing up clients. Software such as Syngrafii’s Video Signing Room (VSR) now allow a lawyer to meet with clients, verify the client’s ID, and even commission affidavits online. This was unheard of just 18 months ago. The world has changed, and with it, the needs of clients has changed. Like all commercial ventures throughout history, there was very little choice but to adapt. If the client would no longer come to you, you had to go to the client in a way that was convenient and safe for them. This is clearly now a permanent change in the mortgage industry.

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