“No Contact” Products Assist During COVID-19

AUSTIN, Texas, April 14, 2020 – FirstClose, Inc., a leading provider of technology solutions for banks and credit unions nationwide, has enhanced existing and created new offerings for a new suite of “no-contact” products. These offerings are designed to assist lenders adapting and struggling through the COVID-19 Crisis.

“We realize this is a challenging time in the industry and companies want to continue to offer great service to their clients in the safest manner possible,” said Tedd Smith, CEO and co-founder of FirstClose. “We want to remind the industry that several of our products enable everyone involved in the financing process to work safely during COVID-19 Crisis by obtaining what they need through new and existing instantaneous and “contact-less” products and services.”

The suite includes:

“No Contact” products addressing county closings:

Instant Property Reports: FirstClose’s proprietary flagship product that creates an instant report with current mortgages, judgments, liens, tax status, the vested owner, and a PDF copy of the Deed, when available. No need to rely on whether the county clerk’s office is open.

Equiguard:. Equiguard is an instant report that includes an affidavit where the borrower attests to the fact that there are no other liens on the subject property other than what is contained in the credit report or discovered during the underwriting process.

Instant Property Reports and Equiguard Reports come with an enhanced E&O policy to protect against any loss due to superior liens, judgments, or other encumbrances missed on the reports.

“No Contact” products addressing social distancing:

Valuation Products*

Verisite Mobile Appraisal Solutions:  This product utilizes a mobile application allowing a homeowner to produce current interior and exterior photos of the subject property for faster loan processing and decision making. It includes efficient fraud-deterring technology, including time, date, and geo-location software showing where and when the pictures were taken on a subject property map within 2 feet of accuracy, plus 3D room-scanning and validation of room depth, all included on a professional and verified report. Verisite can be used with AVMs, Desktop Evaluations, and other valuations to enhance the ability to eliminate contact.

Automated Valuation Model (AVM): A service that can provide real estate property value instantly using mathematical modelling combined with real-time MLS data and comps. FirstClose provides access to 13 different national and reputable AVM models.

Desktop Evaluation: This proprietary e-valuation tool produces more accurate values and higher confidence scores by using manual research methods including an in-house team and automated valuation tools.

Property Condition Report (PCR): Includes a full external inspection of the home including current condition, neighborhood influences, any appearances of damage an also will come with several current photos from each angle of the property including a street view address verification

Exterior Restricted Appraisal Report (RAR): Fully USPAP compliant valuation. An inspector will drive by and take photos and send to the appraiser.  An appraiser will complete a sales comparison approach, determine the value, and include a signature.

Curbside Closings: Curbside Closing is the same as mobile signing, except for the notary signing agent and the consumer will not conduct the signing or notarization in the same room. To abide by the CDC and social distancing guidelines, Curbside Closing allows signer(s) to sign documents without the need for a signing agent to enter the signer’s home or meet face-to-face. The signing agent will meet the signer(s) at the desired location, but the signing will be held with a barrier between the signer(s) and signing agent.

*All Valuation Products come with the option to include enhanced E&O insurance to protect against loss due to inaccurate valuation results as well as the option to add “no contact” interior and exterior mobile photos via Verisite.

FirstClose Integrates with Calyx’s Point LOS

Austin, Texas, March 31, 2020 – FirstClose, a leading provider of technology solutions for mortgage lenders nationwide, announced its integration with Calyx Point®. With the integration of the FirstClose ONE platform, Point users will now be able to order instant property reports on credit, flood, valuation, tax and title directly from the Point platform.

Point users will be able to leverage tools such as FirstClose’s SMART Select, a tool that uses intelligence logic to automatically select the best title vendor within each financial institution’s unique lending footprint. With this integration, users will also have access to FirstClose’s intelligence logic and simplified vendor management, all through one simple user interface.

This technology integration will give Calyx Point users the ability to significantly speed up turn times and reduce costs, ensuring they stay profitable and keep borrowers happy. These efficiency gains will also help users to stay competitive, regardless of the current market conditions.

“We are always looking for ways to make lenders’ jobs simpler and partnering with Calyx presented a great opportunity to share the benefits of FirstClose ONE,” said Tedd Smith, CEO and co-founder of FirstClose. “We always enjoy working with other innovative companies that recognize the need to constantly be improving efficiencies and we are honored they chose us to help them accomplish that.”

“When looking for a settlement services provider, FirstClose stood out to us because they provide much more than just settlement services,” said Thomas Hennen, Director, Strategic Partnerships at Calyx. “Their intelligence logic and other technologies made this decision an easy one and we are excited to work with their team.”

New SVP of Strategy & Sales – Joe Dahleen

AUSTIN, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–FirstClose, a leading provider of technology solutions for mortgage lenders nationwide, has tapped Joe Dahleen as the company’s SVP of strategy and sales. He will be responsible for working with the company’s enterprise sales and product development.

“We are excited to have Joe join our team with his depth of industry experience,” said Tim Smith, CRO and co-founder of FirstClose. “Our growth as a company directly correlates to how we present our technology and build relationships and Joe will help us continue to excel in both those areas.”

Dahleen is a 25-year veteran of the mortgage industry and has specialized in executive management, FinTech and strategic marketing. He has experience in loan production, quality control procedures and secondary marketing. Dahleen is a strong advocate of technology and an expert in leveraging the latest technology and automation to aid in the success of his efforts. Most recently, he was executive vice president and chief strategy officer for MortgageHippo, Inc. and prior to that, he has held executive level positions for banks, Thrift and Loans, Wall Street firms and independent mortgage banking companies.

“I have a passion for making improvements in the way we do business in the mortgage industry, be it operations or deploying innovative technology,” Dahleen said. “FirstClose has the experience and the resources to make innovative changes and it is a privilege to join a team that is uniquely qualified in deploying PropTech and FinTech into a seamless solution.”

FirstClose: Top 25 Fintech Innovator by MREPORT

AustinMarch 12, 2020—Five Star Global today announced FirstClose as one of MReport’s’ Top 25 Fintech Innovators for 2020, reserved for organizations and industry professionals working to push the residential mortgage and housing industries forward.

FirstClose joins the elite group as part of the inaugural class of MReport’s Top 25 Fintech Innovators.

The industry is changing. As millennials and Gen Z buyers continue to pursue the American Dream of homeownership, lenders, servicers, service providers, and other stakeholders must keep pace to help meet their needs.

Through the FirstClose ONE solution, the company provides the industry’s only home equity and refi tool that compiles everything from application to servicing (credit, valuation, title, flood, closing and recording) on one easy-to-navigate platform. By delivering simplified vendor management and consolidating vendors into one platform, FirstClose makes it easy to identify and repair the gaps where lender profits can be maximized. The company delivers its powerful web app and LOS plugin that is the industry’s first and only home equity and refi tool. Rather than spending time gathering information from a host of separate vendors, FirstClose’s technology gathers everything a lender needs and compiles it all in one report, saving time, money and headache.

“Our industry is constantly evolving as disruptors and tech leaders challenge the status quo,” said Ed Delgado, President and CEO of Five Star Global. “We are proud to showcase these fintech innovators who continue to drive progress across the mortgage market.”

“It is an honor to have our technology recognized for the innovation it brings to the industry,” said (FirstClose source). “As the industry’s first and only home equity and refi tool that has everything from application to servicing on one easy-to-navigate platform, we believe we have laid the ground work for even more technological advancements, and we plan to be at the forefront.”

MReport solicited submissions from mortgage companies working in all sectors, from lenders and servicers to title companies and property preservation experts.  View the complete list here. (https://themreport.com/daily-dose/03-02-2020/honoring-the-leaders-in-fintech)

About Five Star Global
Based in Dallas, Five Star Global (FSG) is a national trade association supporting the U.S. residential mortgage and real estate market through membership groups, publishing, conferences, education services, and strategic events. FSG advocates on behalf of and for industry stakeholders on policy matters and interests established to protect, preserve, and promote homeownership. Learn more at TheFiveStar.com

HousingWire Tech100 Awards Winner

AUSTIN, Texas, March 2, 2020 – FirstClose, a leading provider of technology solutions for mortgage lenders nationwide, has been named one of the winners of the eighth annual HW Tech100 awards. The company has been recognized as one of the most innovate technology companies in the U.S. housing economy.

The award seeks to provide a definitive list of the most innovative and effective companies in the industry in order to identify partners and solutions to the problems that mortgage lenders and real estate professionals face every day.

“It is humbling to be recognized for creating solutions and platforms that we genuinely believe will improve the way we do business and ultimately help consumers have a better experience,” said Corey Smith, chief product officer at FirstClose. “We are happy that others in the industry recognize how passionate we are about creating effective, innovative technology.”

According to HousingWire, the Tech100 program grows more competitive each year and the applicants are increasingly impressive. This year was no different.

“This year’s Tech100 winners blew past innovation, moving beyond innovation to transformation,” said HousingWire Associate Magazine Editor Kelsey Ramirez. “In both the real estate and mortgage sectors, fintech companies continue to create new ways to approach the housing process, improving efficiencies, cutting costs and creating a new experience for all parties involved.”

FirstClose’s ONE solution is the mortgage industry’s only home equity and refi tool that compiles everything from application to servicing (credit, valuation, title, flood, closing and recording) on one platform. Rather than spending time gathering information from a host of separate vendors, FirstClose’s technology gathers everything a lender needs and compiles it all in one report, saving time, money and headache. FirstClose makes it easy to identify and repair the gaps where lender profits can be maximized by delivering simplified vendor management and consolidating vendors into one platform.

HousingWire’s motto for 2020 is growth through focus. With that lens, the Tech100 program underwent mitosis and emerged as two highly focused awards — Tech100 Real Estate and Tech100 Mortgage. While collaboration between real estate and mortgage professionals has never been higher, the tools and solutions that empower these professionals to excel are often entirely different,” said HousingWire CEO, Clayton Collins. “The winners of the 2020 HousingWire Tech100 Mortgage and Real Estate awards are truly the most impactful and innovative companies in housing. Not only do these companies empower their clients and users, they are supporting a more efficient, accessible and sustainable housing economy.”

About HousingWire 
HousingWire is the most influential source of news and information for the U.S. mortgage and housing markets. Built on a foundation of independent and original journalism, HousingWire reaches over 60,000 newsletter subscribers daily and over 7.5 million unique visitors each year. Our audience of mortgage, real estate, financial services and fintech professionals rely on us to Move Markets Forward. Visit www.housingwire.com or www.solutions.housingwire.com to learn more.

FirstClose Partners with WeGoLook®

Austin, Texas, November 19, 2019 – Today, FirstClose, a provider of technology solutions for mortgage lenders nationwide, announced a new partnership with WeGoLook®, a subsidiary of Crawford & Company®, the world’s largest publicly listed independent provider of claims management and outsourcing solutions to insurance companies and self-insured entities.

With this integration, FirstClose can now provide clients of financial institutions with WeGoLook’s Property Condition Report. The report details the exterior dwelling condition, appearance of occupancy and other visible details relating to a client’s property. This report can also be used with electronic valuations or automated valuation models in order to satisfy the requirements of the interagency guidelines in regards to valuations.

Corey Smith, chief product officer at FirstClose stated “With our partnership and integration with WeGoLook, we are improving our valuation product offering by delivering solutions to help lenders stay in compliance with interagency guidelines.”

“We’re thrilled to partner with FirstClose. This alliance will give their customers the freedom to obtain reports quickly, saving both time and cost by leveraging our on-demand network of over 45,000 agents,” said WeGoLook president, Meredith Brogan. “We will continue to deliver on our mission of restoring and enhancing lives, businesses and communities by using WeGoLook’s innovative technology to gather and validate information whenever and wherever clients need it most,“ continued Brogan.

About WeGoLook
WeGoLook operates as an independent subsidiary of Crawford & Company (NYSE: CRD‐A and CRD‐B) with more than 45,000 independent contractors dedicated to operations. For more, visit wegolook.com

About Crawford
Based in Atlanta, Crawford & Company (NYSE: CRD‐A and CRD‐B) is the world’s largest publicly listed  independent provider of claims management and outsourcing solutions to insurance companies and self‐insured entities with an expansive global network serving clients in more than 70 countries. For more, visit crawco.com