Foreclosure Fiasco – Let it serve as a reminder to us all

Written By: Theresa Furzland

The recent mess with the foreclosure paperwork (or lack thereof) can serve as a reminder to all of us about the importance of due diligence and complete and accurate loan files and not to let automation make us complacent.

Need FHA Training? CLICK HERE:

The word of the day is data integrity. While many want to point blame at the Mers system for the confusion and lack of documentation that is currently making lenders worst nightmares come true, I don’t think that is fair. When this all shakes out, I think it is going to be discovered that the problem is not automation of processes, but sloppy review and audit procedures. Technology has made our lives easy in so many ways that we have to be even more vigilant.

I have been in this business longer than the computer has. I will honestly say that as a loan closer in my younger years, when we had to type all the documents, there were less mistakes. I will still spot typos on a printed out page easier than on the computer. Today we cut and paste, sort, delete and forward emails so fast that it is easy to glance at a document on the computer and pass it on so quickly that sometimes it’s gone before it hits us what we just read. In the “old days” we would trade files with our co worker and check each other’s work. This was not an “extra”...this was done on every file. How many times in the last month have you received or read something that was obviously spell checked, but not red?

Yes, that was intentional.

If I sound like I’m getting a little worked up on this subject, I am not going to apologize. I am however going to tell you that there is a very simple remedy to this situation. Just follow these simple guidelines:

1 – KNOW YOUR JOB! Educate yourself on all aspects of your role in the process and as many other steps in the process as possible to help you be more efficient. There are resources abounding, and if you arm yourself with the knowledge they provide, you will be more assured of the decisions you must make and when something needs to be corrected. Know where to find those resources and verify to the source! (and no, Wikipedia is not the source!) If you need to know a specific investors requirement – ask them,. Know what regulations apply. Take the courses that will build your knowledge base. Keep current on all updates – the only constant in this business is change.

2 – ESTABLISH AND USE CHECKLISTS/PROCEDURES: No matter how “trivial” a process may seem to you or how many times you have done that task, it is important to establish a procedure that will guarantee all necessary steps are completed properly. The automated systems in place only make it easier to miss mistakes that cost time and money later.

3 – DON’T PASS THE BUCK: Don’t ever assume that the next, or last, person did their job properly. If it comes across your desk, look at it. If something seems wrong, find out why and fix it. If a correct process has not been followed then that needs to be addressed (see #2). If you aren’t sure, ask!

The main concern about the foreclosure documentation is the issue of affidavits being signed when the supporting documentation had not been reviewed by the person signing the affidavit!! This is basic stuff folks! Don’t put your name on it, or pass something down the line that you have not properly reviewed.

It really comes down to due diligence. As automated as we have become in our society, the mortgage business always has and always will depend on accurate documentation. Following these 3 simple rules, you will find that no matter how dangerously easy computers make our lives there is no reason to fall prey to complacency.

Need FHA Training? CLICK HERE:

And let’s hope we don’t because it is our biggest enemy.

About The Author

Theresa Furzland - As an NAMP® staff writer, Theresa Furzland serves as an instructor for Loan Processor University ( Theresa has 25+ years of experience ranging from origination, processing, closing and post closing. She is currently a producing Branch Manager for LendSmart Mortgage, LLC and own and operate Willow Wood Mortgage Services, Inc. If you're interested in becoming a writer for NAMP®, please email us at:

Opinion-Editorial (Op-Ed) Disclaimer For NAMP® Library Articles: The views and opinions expressed in the NAMP® Library articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect any official NAMP® policy or position. Examples of analysis performed within this article are only examples. They should not be utilized in real-world application as they are based only on very limited and dated open source information. Assumptions made within the analysis are not reflective of the position of NAMP®. Nothing contained in this article should be considered legal advice.