COVID-19 Updates: Answers for Our Credit Union Partners
We’re providing this page to guide the staff members of our valued partners by addressing questions or concerns that may be raised by members they’re working with on a daily basis. We plan to update this page continually. We thank you for your support as we work together to assist hundreds of members with refinance or purchase mortgages.
MAM has taken several steps to assist those impacted by COVID-19. For specific questions on their situation, please direct the member to contact the Loss Mitigation Department of Midwest Loan Services (our loan servicing partner) at 1-800-240-4214 or by email at email@example.com.
During this time, for members who set up a deferment or hardship plan, we are:
Offering options to defer payments for a period of at least 90 days if you are impacted by COVID-19
Waiving late-payment fees for the entire duration of your forbearance plan
Abstaining from reporting late payments to credit-rating agencies for the entire duration of your forbearance plan
Postponing foreclosures for a minimum of 60 days
The specific assistance options available to each member will depend on whether their mortgage is with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, or your credit union. The links below may be useful if your loan is with Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. If you don’t know, there are lookup links below to help you figure it out.
Yes, like our credit union partners, MAM is considered an essential business. Our team is mostly working remotely but is here to serve your needs and offer any assistance.
Midwest Loan Services performs loan servicing services on behalf of Member Advantage Mortgage and the credit unions it partners with and handles the day-to-day administration tasks associated with your members' loan, including receiving payments, managing escrow accounts, and sending monthly statements.
There may be both state and federal assistance programs available to your borrower members. It is best to advise your members to contact Midwest Loan Services at 1-800-240-4214 when it comes to getting the most accurate and personalized information about their mortgage and situation.
MAM consulted with Midwest Loan Services (MLS) and most private lenders are recommending a 3 month deferment at this time. The details of the recommended approach are bulleted below:
Current or delinquency <30 days as of March 13, 2020:
Midwest Loan Services obtains verbal confirmation of COVID-19 hardship (90% of cases)
The servicer is not required to obtain documentation of the borrower’s hardship, verbal verification is sufficient. Notes will be made on the loans within the servicing system and a notice will be sent to the Borrower(s) but a signed agreement will not be required during this pandemic.
Automatic deferment of 3 months. The loan payments that are deferred will act as a balloon at maturity so the maturity date does not adjust. No modification would be required. Loan payments deferred would be included in a payoff quote.
Escrow payments determined on case by case basis – MLS encourages paying escrow during deferment
No fees or late charges for 3 months
Delinquency >30 days as of March 13, 2020
Require documented evidence of direct impact by COVID-19
If yes, consider deferment of 3 months
Late charges turned off for 3 months
If no, move to case by case credit union determinations
Delinquency >90 days
Require documented evidence of direct impact by COVID-19
Late charges turned off for 3 months
Pause delinquency for 90 days, then resume days past due on the 91st day
Foreclosure sales are suspended for 60 days starting as of March 13, 2020.
All credit reporting to the repositories of delinquencies related to COVID-19 will be suspended as long as the borrower is under an active deferment plan.
Additionally, for GSE borrowers who have received a deferment plan in response to COVID-19, the servicer has been instructed to begin attempts to contact the borrower no later than 30 days prior to the expiration of the deferment plan term or is expired, to continue outreach attempts, and to analyze each case carefully in accordance with the requirements for which mortgage loan modification is most appropriate for the borrower.
A sudden and unexpected drop in mortgage rates has led to a surge in refinance applications across the entire country. MAM experienced a 300% jump in daily loan applications in the space of 24 hours when rates first dropped, and the ongoing application pace has remained more than double what it was before the crisis.
While it’s exciting to see any uptick in business, when the surge comes as quickly and as significantly as this one has, it comes with many substantial challenges. Rest assured, we are doing everything we can to meet those challenges.
Finally, because the full extent and duration of the ongoing health pandemic is not known at this time, the process may take significantly longer if appraisers and/or title companies are unable to perform their work normally.
Refinance inquiries remain higher than normal and are not necessarily consistent from one day to the next. When rates drop slightly it tends to prompt some extra calls. Generally speaking, we’re currently getting to most new leads within 1 business day, but it may take up to 2 business days in some cases. We will provide further updates on this timeline as they become available. No matter what, we will contact every member who inquires, and we’re working overtime to do it. That means that some members may receive calls outside our normal business hours. However, we will not call before 8 AM or after 9 PM unless specifically scheduled with the member in advance.
First, verify the date that they inquired and who they inquired with. Then provide that information to Kristie Cahill via an email at Kristie.firstname.lastname@example.org. NOTE: Please do not provide Kristie’s direct email to any member. Kristie will NOT be following up personally with the member, but will instead follow-up with the assigned MLO to ensure a prompt call back.
The management team at MAM is communicating with credit union management about potential ways the credit union can assist that will help restore response times to normal. One way you can help is by encouraging members to use the online application available through the mortgage area of their credit union website rather than calling or setting an appointment directly with a specific MLO. Doing the application in-person can use 45-60 minutes of an MLO’s time whereas it is much quicker for them to review information already submitted and refine it in a follow-up phone call or visit. We are not looking to eliminate the human interaction or personal touch, but do want to maximize the effectiveness of the initial meeting/conversation with each member, and having a chance to review their initial application from the website helps.
Considering the current industry circumstances (i.e. surge in applications) in addition to the ongoing health crisis, it’s impossible to say with any certainty how long the process will take, and it depends on several factors. Loans that require a full appraisal to be completed will likely take longer than those that qualify for an appraisal waiver, and most loan applications still require a full appraisal. Members should expect a minimum of 60 days at this point, possibly longer.
In addition, it’s important to let members know that the full extent of the ongoing health pandemic is not known at this time, and the process may take significantly longer if appraisers and/or title companies are unable to perform their work normally.
Since purchase transactions generally have more time sensitivities than refinances, it is customary to prioritize them based on the required closing dates. For this reason, we are managing purchase inquiries separate from refinance inquiries and will prioritize them as much as possible to ensure that closing deadlines are met.
However, you should understand that it’s likely to take longer than normal. If at all possible, it would be a good idea to build extra time into your purchase contracts with the home seller.
Currently, all of the secondary market investors require loan applicants to show evidence of employment and ongoing income. This generally means that members are required to provide 30 consecutive days of paystubs that fall within 60 days of the closing date. In addition, MAM performs a Verbal Verification of Employment (VVOE) within 10 days of the scheduled closing to confirm that all borrowers remain employed prior to closing the loan. An inability to meet these requirements will unfortunately disqualify the member from being approved. Considering the circumstances, many in the industry are looking to Fannie Mae and/or Freddie Mac for special guidance that might offer some leniency on this standard lending requirement. However, at present there has been no change to standard policy.
We've also created a member-facing page to help them get their questions answered, please share the following link with any member looking for information: https://www.memberadvantagemortgage.com/covid-19-updates-your-questions-answered
No, not all loan applications will require an appraisal. Certain FHA or VA loans may be eligible for an appraisal waiver, and even some conventional loan applications submitted to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac qualify for an appraisal waiver. Any decision to waive an appraisal is dictated by specific program guidelines (such as a streamline FHA refinance or certain VA refinance programs) or by the applicable investor. We run all loan applications through applicable automated underwriting engines provided by investors and generally know early in the process if an appraisal is going to be needed.
Currently, there are some delays with processing and returning results on requests sent to the Social Security Administration. This may mean that members will be asked to provide a copy of their Social Security Card if we are unable to process verification via our standard method.