Many consumers have likely seen the technology from their banks that allows them to deposit a check just by taking a picture of it with their smartphone. Soon, they might be making mortgage applications over the phone the same way.
According to a report by American Banker, tech experts say that in the near future, more mortgage lenders might be able to take advantage of a type of software already common for other banking services: image capture. The technology could be especially beneficial in the mortgage industry because it typically involves a lot of verification and manual data entry that could be expedited considerably using the right software.
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Experts say one instance in which the technology will be useful will be when looking at documents necessary for the mortgage application process, the report said. Instead of manually entering every bit of information necessary from tax forms, pay stubs, and more, a mortgage professional could just take a picture and rely on the app's software to scan the documents for whatever data is needed, saving time and effort.
However, there may be some limitations to doing a mortgage application by phone, depending upon what those in the mortgage industry expect from the software, the report said. For instance, lengthier documents that are often involved in mortgage approval might be a bit of a hassle to deal with in this way.
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"We have to understand, based on user needs, the best way to use this technology," Bruce Orcutt, a senior director at Kofax, a company that sells this type of image software, told the news site. "If it's a document that has 20 pages, the tech support that, but [mortgage professionals] may not like that."
Appyling for a mortgage by phone has its upsides for consumers as well, the report said. By making the approval process faster, potential borrowers can more quickly find out whether they qualified for a loan they wanted, and that will in turn give them more of a chance to determine their next course of action.
The mortgage industry is in a bit of flux these days as lenders wait for new federal regulations, and borrowers begin to once again enter the market in hope of taking advantage of the current high levels of affordability.
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