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Fintech startup Hitch rolls out white-label HELOC product

New York City-based fintech startup Hitch announced the launch of its Hitch Home Equity White Label program in partnership with United Mortgage Corp. 

This iteration signals Hitch’s smooth transition from the direct-to-consumer market to a collaborative effort with independent mortgage lenders. United Mortgage Corp., a midsized lender based in the state of New York, originated more than $2 billion in purchase and refinance loans last year.

The new white-label platform includes a loan origination system, a point-of-sale interface and direct access to capital markets. It empowers lenders to originate home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) under their brand without redirecting borrowers to external platforms.

It will also help borrowers gain access to additional lines of credit faster. ​​Most HELOC programs offered by big banks took an average of 41 days from application to close in 2022, according to a study by the Mortgage Bankers Association. Meanwhile, Hitch can process applications in a few minutes and deliver the funds within seven days, according to William Schoeffler, president and co-founder of Hitch.

“There is no question that the depository banks can’t keep up with the independent mortgage bankers,“ David Wind, CEO and co-founder of Hitch, told HousingWire. “And the independent mortgage bankers can’t keep up with the companies that exclusively do HELOCs. Through this partnership, we are allowing independent mortgage bankers to become competitive with firms that are just doing HELOCs. In that way, they have every advantage.”

HELOCs offer homeowners a revolving line of credit obtained by leveraging the equity in their homes. They allow borrowers to manage cash flow for various purposes such as home renovations, debt consolidation or other major expenses. Loan amounts can vary from $25,000 to $500,000, with a prerequisite FICO score of 660 for many borrowers.

“That automation allows a loan officer to submit home equity lines applications through Hitch directly, and be mostly hands off after that point,” said Jason Morano, vice president of sales at United Mortgage Corp.

“This allows loan officers to do two things: first, do more home equity lines, and second, retain the customers and their future business. If your client wants a HELOC and you can’t offer it to them, the first thing they are going to do is go to another bank, and we don’t want that.”

Loan officers will have access to a dedicated portal through which they will be able to engage with their clients. Borrowers will be able to complete their applications and receive decisions within a matter of minutes. 

Hitch addresses a critical gap for small to midsized lenders, as they have traditionally been constrained by rigid systems that make it challenging to profitably offer smaller loans. Looking ahead, Hitch aims to expand its product portfolio for lenders, including offerings such as home equity investment solutions and a “buy before you sell” product.

Hitch was founded in 2022 and has raised $2 million in funding since its inception.

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