PROGRESS in Lending Mercury Network

This article is reprinted, with permission, from the website of the PROGRESS in Lending Association:

Tony Garritano

As I write here often, both of my boys are in elementary school. It's a bit early, but I worry about the urge to fit in overtaking them. As it is my wife is Nigerian so my kids are hhalf black, half white, which makes them different right off the bat. Will they try to overcompensate by trying to fit in by other means? I hope not.

It pays—in my opinion—to be an original. Why do I mention this? I'm very impressed with the GSEs moving to mandate e-appraisals through the Veros platform using MISMO standards. I think it will really benefit the industry. It will push us into this century vs. mortgage always being a century behind. Yes I said a century behind. There was some news I read that will make it even easier for industry participants to make this transition that I think is really worthy of sharing.

What do I mean? a la mode announced that Veros Real Estate Solutions has integrated their VeroSELECT and Valuation Risk Management (VRM) products with Mercury Network's vendor management platform. The integration connects Veros' platform clients with the largest network of real estate appraisers and appraisal management companies. The services will support real-time appraisal order placement, appraisal order payment processing, status updates through the order cycle, and delivery of the completed appraisal report in MISMO 2.6 format, and electronic appraisal submission in full compliance with the Federal Housing Finance Agency's (FHFA) mandated Uniform Collateral Data Portal (UCDP).

UCDP is being implemented by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as part of a greater loan quality initiative—the Uniform Mortgage Data Program—in order to provide seller/servicers with common requirements for appraisal and data delivery, ultimately improving loan quality and transparency across the board. The plug-in between Mercury Network and Veros provides platform users with the ability to connect to the appraiser's desktop software as well as place orders directly to AMCs using Mercury Network as their vendor management platform. Additionally, the plug-in enables appraisal reports to be delivered to the Veros systems using fully compliant MISMO XML, which in turn, will allow the report data to flow directly to the UCDP.

As a result, this connection will provide users with the ability to streamline compliance and enhance quality assurance. Business and workflow rules (which are executed on the appraiser's desktop from within the Mercury Network plug-in) preprocess the appraisal report before it is delivered to the Veros system.

Adam Calvery, a la mode's President of Mortgage Solutions said, "This integration with Veros perfectly positions our two companies to achieve several of our shared priorities, such as forward-thinking compliance, and high-quality finished appraisal reports. We're excited about the implications this development has for our respective customers."

"We're delighted to be working with Mercury Network," added David Rasmussen, senior vice president of sales and operations for Veros. "The ability to seamlessly connect with Mercury's diverse network of appraisers and AMCs all the way through the valuation chain to the secondary market creates an industry efficiency where everyone wins."

It's unique cooperation like this that will—in my opinion—make it easier for lenders and appraisers alike to move into this century and start exchanging trusted data vs. error-prone paper.

Tony Garritano is chairman and founder at PROGRESS in Lending Association. As a speaker Tony has worked hard to inform executives about how technology should be a tool used to further business objectives. For over 10 years he has worked as a journalist, researcher and speaker in the mortgage technology space. Starting the PROGRESS in Lending Association was the next step for someone like Tony, who has dedicated his career to providing mortgage executives with the information needed to make informed technology decisions. He can be reached via e-mail at