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Eye on the Industry: Updates on Wells Fargo, Doc Magic and More …

From promotions and new appointments to awards and new technology, get the pulse of the mortgage business in this weekly update.

Wells Fargo & Company, based in Des Moines, Iowa, announced this week that Perry Hilzendeger, currently EVP and Head of Home Lending Servicing, will become the new head of Home Lending Retail, effective April 16. As head of Home Lending Retail, a newly created role, Hilzendeger will report to Michael DeVito, who was named Head of Wells Fargo Home Lending in January. Based in Des Moines, Hilzendeger will oversee nearly 15,000 retail production team members in mortgage and home equity sales, underwriting, fulfillment and support functions. “Perry’s broad experience and knowledge of our business is unmatched, and he has a deep understanding of the customer experience at every stage of the homeownership journey,” DeVito said. “I am confident that his energy and experience will help us meet the evolving needs of our customers and clients.” Hilzendeger, a 28-year Wells Fargo veteran, took over as head of Home Lending Servicing in 2015. In that role he oversaw nearly 13,000 team members who service mortgage loans and home equity products for more than 9 million customers and more than $1.2 trillion in mortgage loans for investors.  Prior to that, he was head of Default Servicing, where he led teams dedicated to helping customers prevent and resolve delinquencies. Other key roles have included leadership positions in fulfillment and nearly 15 years in sales and sales management. Hilzendeger earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management, Minneapolis. Gui Kahl, currently SVP for Servicing Change Delivery, will head Home Lending Servicing operations on an interim basis while Wells Fargo conducts a search for a permanent leader.

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DocMagic, Inc. a provider of fully compliant loan document preparation, regulatory compliance, and comprehensive eMortgage services headquartered in Torrance, California, announced that Deutsche Bank has successfully implemented and is actively utilizing its proprietary eVault technology. “Deutsche Bank has an international footprint in multiple forms of lending and servicing, and having a company of their size select our eVault to safely and securely store sensitive loan documents speaks volumes about the bank’s confidence in our technology,” said Dominic Iannitti, President and CEO of DocMagic, Inc. “We are very pleased to partner with Deutsche Bank on a long-term basis to help achieve its servicing goals with our eVault.” Using the DocMagic eVault, Deutsche Bank’s document custody group is now empowered to take full possession of electronically originated assets for clients as the loan market continues to transition to a paperless process. DocMagic establishes a legally compliant method to securely move original electronic files from one custodian to another while preserving unique authoritative digital ownership. The eVault ensures authentication of original documents passing between owners, irrespective of how many duplicate electronic files there may be of the same record. The repository system within DocMagic’s eVault relies upon digital tamper-proof seals and a detailed, well-documented audit trail that ensures compliance and provides detailed reporting. DocMagic also made available to Deutsche Bank the ability to leverage a unique dual-option solution that accesses its on-premise eVault installation to provide a gateway to seamlessly and securely connect to MERS via any browser, as well as by way of a direct VPN connection.

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For the second year in a row, Primary Residential Mortgage, Inc. (PRMI), one of the nation’s top mortgage lenders, was an honored recipient of Ellie Mae’s 2018 Hall of Fame Award announced at Ellie Mae’s Experience Conference on Wednesday, March 21, in Las Vegas. PRMI was named the top company for Excellence in Compliance Automation and recognized as an honorable mention for Outstanding Efficiency and ROI. Ellie Mae provides software solutions and services for the residential mortgage industry. Its software helps to streamline the homebuying process through its digital platform and has helped PRMI close nearly 25,000 home loans in 2017. “Our loan originators need an innovative software solution to help achieve their clients’ dreams of homeownership,” said A.J. Swope, SVP of Secondary Markets. “Ellie Mae’s Encompass Program enhances our loan quality process, providing our borrowers a positive and smooth experience from beginning to end. As a result, our Branch Partners and clients are happy and the quality of PRMI’s loan process benefits from the full power of Encompass.” Ellie Mae inducts mortgage lenders and partners into its Hall of Fame for distinguishing themselves through industry leadership and innovative use of Ellie Mae technologies.

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AmeriFirst Home Mortgage (AmeriFirst) a division of AmeriFirst Financial Corp., has announced the appointment of Ronald Bergum as President of its newly formed Southwest Division. As a recognized mortgage industry leader, Bergum has held numerous executive level positions in the mortgage industry, with his most recent position of CEO at Prospect Mortgage, LLC, as well as serving as Co-CEO of Indymac Bank’s Retail Lending Group, and EVP of Production and Sales for the Western Retail Division of American Home Mortgage. “Ron has the unique ability to take his vision, passion and in-depth understanding of the mortgage industry’s competitive landscape and motivate his talented team to achieve exceptional results,” said David Gahm, Co-CEO and Co-Founder of AmeriFirst. “He has a track record of establishing a solid business foundation and building it into an industry leader and doing so in an industry that is often volatile and challenging. We are confident in his ability to successfully take us through this new phase of growth in Southern California.” AmeriFirst, headquartered in Kalamazoo, Michigan, opened its first Southern California branch in Rancho Cucamonga in mid-March of this year. Bergum will oversee the advancement of the company’s entrance in this market by with an initial team of 12 personnel who will offer a full range of purchase, refinance, renovation and construction loan options.

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Blend has announced that Lennar,  the Florida-headquartered homebuilder, has selected Blend's technology to power Eagle Home Mortgage, the homebuilder’s financing arm. The California-based mortgage technology provider will help streamline the mortgage application process for Lennar by reducing friction throughout the process at scale. “As the largest homebuilder in the U.S., Lennar understands how the right technology partner can meaningfully increase access to home loans by reducing origination costs,” Blend said on its blog. “Now that millennials comprise more than one-third of all home buyers according to the National Association of Realtors, it is more important than ever for lenders to provide a transparent and efficient process with a consumer-grade experience. Our work with Lennar is helping them provide this type of higher-quality experience today’s buyers demand.” Lennar and Blend’s partnership is focused on delivering a frictionless customer experience at scale. “Lenders using Blend already represent over 25 percent of the overall U.S. mortgage market, and our platform saw nearly $60 billion in mortgage applications in 2017 alone,” the blog stated. “We’re not only excited about empowering Lennar customers with a data-driven application experience, but also look forward gathering their insights as we continue to reimagine lending.”

About Author: Radhika Ojha

Radhika Ojha, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her master’s degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Dallas, Texas. You can contact her at Radhika.Ojha@theMReport.com.

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