Demands of Online Real Estate Transactions

 

Is Your Website Keeping Up with the New Demands of Online Real Estate Transactions?

 

The growing sector of proptech is all about managing information and transactions in the world of real estate, while fintech provides the foundation for the deal, via mortgages. While technology-based platforms facilitating the buying and selling homes are becoming more common, they are also growing more sophisticated. Soon, ‘business as usual’ will no longer exist in the business of real estate and real estate software.

Ownest's lead qualifier, Pront-O, can be embedded in home builders webpages

If you are in real estate technology, you’re likely aware there has been an explosion in the use of data and insights driving the home-buying process. There is also an industry-wide push towards a more digital, end-to-end process. So, the question becomes, how to keep up with that evolution? These days, software companies must move beyond simply managing IT to leveraging technology to create value for the business and, in the case of real estate software or platforms, for the real estate buyer. Doing so involves re-envisioning the role of technology in your organization and integrating it across the business to deliver excellent end user experiences. With the pandemic, the definition of ‘excellent’ has expanded to mean all-digital engagement with customers, ensuring a safe experience. Where to start? When it comes to the fintech side of the solution and the question of who can actually afford to buy the homes on a platform, you may need to look outside your organization to obtain the kind of credit-related business and innovation solutions you need – to an expert partner that can help you not only keep up trends but unlock new business potential.

 

Choosing the Right Tech Partner

When choosing the right technology service provider or consultant, it’s important to work with one that has a deep understanding of your business and its goals. It’s also important to choose a partner that provides functional, operational and strategic value. These value elements include connectivity, integration, flexibility, simplification, time savings and reduced effort. The Ownest end-to-end financing platform provides all these value elements and more. The company has applied its thirty years of mortgage experience to solve the industry’s biggest inefficiencies and empower faster financing. Ownest works as a strategic partner to its software and building clients, deploying its game-changing financing technology based on their needs. Its flexible, customizable open API platform is adaptable to virtually any platform so they can provide the right solution for your business and technology needs. And the Ownest widget white-labels transactions, seamlessly integrating them into your brand. Ownest creates value by empowering faster financing, so their success is directly tied to yours.

 

Leveraging the Power of AI and Automation

Ownest’s cutting-edge software instantly and accurately pre-qualifies potential homebuyers with eight simple questions, so you or your customer can know their creditworthiness at a glance. It’s an example of how AI is making the selling and buying experience faster and easier. Their innovative solution allows you to validate and qualify inbound leads, pre-qualify customers, verify buyers and validate offers. Its automated mortgage application solves the problem of mortgage processes that are stuck in analog, with 67% less paperwork and 70% faster.

 

 

The Bottom Line

Reimagining how your real estate platform functions involves embracing next-generation capabilities like end-to-end automation and platform-as-a-service. But keeping pace with rapid technological advances is taxing companies’ IT function. In addition, there is now increasing consumer demand for a ‘one-stop shop’ real estate and financing experience. The best thing your software or real estate business can do in 2021 is to stay agile, as the recovery proceeds unpredictably. Why not work with a partner with the expertise to understand your needs and a flexible mortgage financing solution that can be customized to meet them?

Contact Ownest to learn more

 

The Widget

 

The Ownest Widget turns any digital platform
into a powerful sales engine.

 

What does “Powered by Ownest” mean?

Ownest's lead qualifier, Pront-O, can be embedded in home builders webpages

 

Technology tailored to any brand

Today’s consumers expect ease of functionality and brand engagement. One of the best ways to engage and build trust is through customization and personalization – that’s where our widget plays its part – from behind the scenes. It allows our clients to put their brand or their customer’s brand front and centre, whether they are a builder or a real estate software provider. Our widget powers the ability to sell online – its innovative design allows it to be customized to any digital platform and ‘wrapped’ in any brand, where it can be used in any online application:

 

Website | Social Media | Online Ads | Show Suite Devices

 

 

How does it work?

The widget amplifies brand and product advertising via omnichannel marketing, providing marketing reach from anywhere and any channel. It acts as a conduit to drive purchase-ready leads at the point of purchase, which is wherever you choose. It works invisibly in the background, funnelling traffic and leads from any online site into Pront-O, our pre-qualification tool. The widget can be configured to allow buyers to pre-qualify and/or make an online mortgage application via any process, form, website or a social media post.

 

Seamless integration

Our widget white labels transactions via direct front end integration, making it an invisible addition to your existing platforms and marketing efforts. You retain all the SEO value of your website pages, social media, or ads.

 

Promotes engagement, brand loyalty and opportunities to sell

The more connected to a brand a customer feels, the more engaged and loyal to the brand they will be. By amplifying your brand or your customer’s brand, the widget promotes engagement. Providing prospective buyers with an incredible tool to get financing builds trust and confidence, giving you a competitive advantage. Engaged customers are not only more likely to buy, they’re also more likely to provide repeat business and referrals, now and at future life stages. The widget creates the conditions for nurturing an ongoing customer connection and additional business. So, why not let the widget turn your website or ads into potential selling tools?

Have questions about how our widget can turn your online platforms into powerful sales engines?

We’d be happy to answer them.

Contact Ownest to learn more

 

 

A Glossary of Mortgage Terms and Their Definitions for New Home Buyers

A Glossary of Mortgage Terms and Their Definitions for New Home Buyers

 

Buying your new home is an exciting new adventure! As with every new adventure, there may be some new terminology that you may not be familiar with. This handy guide can inform you as you complete your mortgage documentation. Don’t forget – you can always contact the friendly folks at Ownest for any additional information or help relating to your mortgage application!

 

Adjustable-Rate Mortgage

Adjustable-rate mortgages, or ARMs, are also known as variable-rate mortgages. ARMs have flexible interest rates, meaning that the interest rate on the mortgage will vary based on an underlying index and the prime interest rate set by the lender. (Also see Variable Rate Mortgage)

Affordability

Your ability to carry the cost of ownership of a property in relation to your available income.

Amortization

A fancy way of saying the process of spreading out payments over time. You pay your mortgage over time by way of instalment payments which usually include principal and interest. At the start of your loan period, most of your payment goes towards interest, but over time you chip away at the principal. (See Principal and Interest.)

Amortization Period

The period of time required to repay your mortgage by equal instalments of set payments based on a particular interest rate. The payments are usually a combination of principal and interest in blended amounts.

Amortization Schedule

A table showing the amount of principal and interest in each of your payment instalments and the outstanding principal balance of the loan after each payment is made.

Annual Percentage Rate

Annual percentage rate (APR) is the interest rate that you will pay annually for your loan. It includes additional lender fees. It is usually expressed as a percentage. If you see two interest rates when you shop for a loan or mortgage, the higher rate is your APR.

Applicant (Mortgage)

Refers to all borrowers, co-borrowers and guarantors on a mortgage loan application.

Appraisal

An unbiased opinion by a professional of your home, based on your home’s physical and functional characteristics and the value of homes nearby. Mortgage lenders require an appraisal before they will grant you a mortgage on your home.

Balance

The amount of unpaid mortgage left after a payment has been made.

Blended Payments

Blended payments are a way of repaying a loan that sets equal monthly payments of principal and interest (blended) over an amortization period. By contrast, in a “principal and interest” loan, the borrower pays back the same amount of principal each month, plus a steadily decreasing interest payment.

Borrower

The one who obtains financing from a lender with the agreement that it will be repaid, with interest, within a defined timeframe. You are the borrower if you are getting a mortgage.

Canada Guaranty

A leading private mortgage insurer providing mortgage default insurance.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

The federal crown corporation that established mortgage default insurance for lenders and which promotes the construction of new homes, the repair and modernization of existing houses, and the improvement of housing and living conditions. (See also Canada Guaranty and Genworth)

Closed Mortgage

A closed mortgage is one that cannot be fully paid off, refinanced or renegotiated before the end of the term without incurring a penalty. Lender breakage costs, the opportunity cost to a lender of a borrower repaying a loan before scheduled maturity, will incur a payout penalty.

Credit Report

A record that details an applicant’s past borrowing and repayment history, and which is the reason for their credit score. Lenders often obtain borrower’s credit reports from Equifax and Trans Union.

Credit Score

Your credit score is a three-digit number that comes from the information in your credit report. It shows how well you manage credit and how risky it would be for a lender to lend you money. Your credit score is calculated using a formula based on your credit report.

Debt Ratio

Also called debt-to-income ratio or debt service ratio, it’s a comparison of your total monthly payments to your income. It is used to determine how much of a mortgage you can afford as a borrower. It’s the percentage of your income that goes toward paying your monthly debts, and it helps lenders decide how much you can borrow. (Also see Gross Debt Ratio and Total Debt Service)

Down Payment

The part of the purchase price of a home that the buyer pays in cash and does not finance with a mortgage. The minimum requirement in Canada is five per cent and can be from your own resources (cash, savings, investments) or be gifted or borrowed from a credit card or line of credit.

Fixed-Rate Mortgage

A fixed-rate mortgage is one in which the interest rate remains the same over the whole term of the mortgage.

Floating Rate

A floating (aka variable or adjustable) mortgage rate refers to a mortgage that does not have a fixed rate of interest over the life of the instrument but rather floats with the market.

Genworth

A leading private mortgage insurer providing mortgage default insurance.

Gross Debt Ratio

A ratio that is the percentage of your income needed to pay all of your monthly housing costs, including principal, interest, taxes, and heat (PITH). It also includes 50% of your condo fees, if applicable. The percentage can vary by lender.

Interest Rate

The amount charged by a lender to a borrower for the use of borrowed funds, calculated as a percentage of the principal.

Lender

The bank or other institution responsible for underwriting, funding, and administering your mortgage loan and to whom your real estate is pledged as security for the loan. (Also see Mortgagee)

Maturity

The end of a term, or period, for a mortgage loan at which time the borrower may have the option to pay off the mortgage, renew it with the existing lender or transfer it to another lender. The maturity date of a mortgage is when the mortgage term ends. It is often referred to as the renewal date because it’s when you as the borrower may have the option to renew, refinance, or pay your mortgage off completely, with no penalty. (Also see Mortgage Renewal)

Mortgage

A mortgage is a type of loan used to buy a home or other property. It allows the lender to take possession of the property if you don’t repay the loan on time. The property is the security for the loan. The payments cover the interest on the loan plus the principal (the amount of the loan).

Mortgage Insurance

A credit risk management tool protecting the lender from losses due to default on the mortgage by the borrower. It is typically required when the loan to value ratio for the property is 80% or greater.

Mortgage Pre-Qualification

A pre-qualification gives you an estimate of ow much house you can afford, based on your credit information, gross household income and overall finances. It does not require supporting paperwork.

Mortgage Pre-Approval      

The tentative approval for a mortgage, made in advance of a home purchase. It is valid for a specified time period and is subject to the borrower submitting their supporting documentation to the lender, and subject to their financial position not changing. Once a property has been purchased, the property must also meet the lender’s underwriting requirements.

Mortgage Renewal

The process by which a borrower agrees to another mortgage term with the current lender to replace the term that has matured. At the end of the prior mortgage term, and with a balance of funds still owing, the borrower may choose to continue with the same lender for another term. However, the details of the mortgage document may change at the time of the mortgage renewal to reflect the current mortgage market. The new term leaves the existing registered mortgage in place and is therefore not considered a new mortgage. The old mortgage document secures the renewed term, and its provisions are amended to fit the new term.

Mortgage Statement

A statement received from the lender that includes details of the mortgage such as property address, outstanding principal balance, monthly payment, interest rate and mortgage term.

Mortgage Term

The period for which the lender loans funds to the borrower, as specified in the mortgage agreement. At the end of the mortgage term, the principal and unpaid interest are due and payable by the borrower to the lender. At that time, the borrower may renew or refinance the mortgage. (Also see Mortgage Refinance and Mortgage Renewal)

Mortgagee

An individual or organization that lends money secured by real property for which they may receive specified payments according to the mortgage agreement. (Also see Lender)

Mortgagor

The borrower in a mortgage, typically the home buyer. The mortgagor makes specified payments according to the mortgage agreement. (Also see Borrower)

Open Mortgage

A mortgage that can be paid off early without any penalties or fees attached.

Principal (Mortgage)

The amount of funds originally borrowed from the lender or the portion of a mortgage still owing upon which interest is calculated.

Qualifying

The process of determining a prospective borrower’s eligibility for mortgage financing related to a potential real estate purchase. (Also see Mortgage Pre-Approval)

Term

The period for which the lender loans funds to the borrower, as specified in the mortgage agreement. (Also see Mortgage Term)

Total Debt Service (TDS)

The percentage of the borrower’s income that is needed to cover housing costs (GDS) plus any other monthly obligations that an individual has, such as credit card payments and car payments. The percentage can vary by lender. (Also see Debt Ratio)

Title

A document that records the information about the land, such as the legal land description, municipal jurisdiction, ownership, and registered interests. The Land Titles Office no longer issues a paper Certificate of Title, but a paper copy may be available from any Registry Agent in Alberta. An electronic copy is available on the Spatial Information System (SPIN) operated by Alberta Registries, Service Alberta.

Variable Rate Mortgage

A mortgage where the interest rate is periodically adjusted based on the prime lending rate typically set by the lender. Rather than being a Fixed Rate Mortgage, which has the same interest rate over the term, when an interest rate change occurs, payments may be increased or decreased. (Also see Floating Rate)

 

Do you have mortgage-related questions? Feel free to contact us and one of our friendly in-house experts will be happy to help!

 

Customer and Business Insights

Know Your Customer. Optimize Your Operations.

Pront-O by Ownest lets you know your customer up front

To make effective business decisions, it’s important to have the right customer and business insights. By analyzing the insights that our platform provides, you’ll make better decisions about what, when and how to sell to customers. Managers will also be able to monitor the productivity of strategies and staff. The results? Increased efficiency and profitability.

Now You Can Lead the Sales Conversation

Knowing your customer’s creditworthiness at a glance is a major sales advantage. But the Ownest system provides other valuable insights. Lead the sales conversation intelligently, identify the most appropriate product, and introduce up-selling or cross-selling opportunities. Pront-O gives the borrower choice, convenience and control – you have an instant, detailed and accurate snapshot of their creditworthiness.

Ownest's Pront-O app Instantly Pre-Qualify Borrowers with the 5Cs of Credit

The Five Cs of Credit

Lenders use these criteria to gauge the creditworthiness of potential borrowers. The Five Cs are used as part of the due diligence process to predict the chance of default and overall risk for the lender. Using the Five Cs gives a better overall picture of the borrower, by including the more ‘personal’ side of financing, like their character, as opposed to just past history and collateral.

 

Ownest's software verifies credit using the Five Cs of credit


Unmatched, Actionable Customer Insights

In addition to instantly validating their actual verified income via CRA and determining a customer’s creditworthiness, once the applicant is a customer, the autonomous mortgage application delivers even more in-depth insights about them.

  • Demographics – age, income, gender and education are useful real estate demographics – for an individual sale and for future planning. In addition to giving you the information you can use to identify up-selling or cross-selling opportunities, they give you useful data for identifying micro-markets or peer groups that share certain characteristics. Demographics give you actionable information to develop marketing strategies so you can sell into large and niche markets.
  • Geographic/Spatial – if the customer is applying from work, it may inform their choice of home location, so it’s valuable information to have in personalizing their potential real estate choices, for example.
  • Lifecycle – knowing where the customer is in the real estate lifecycle helps you position your product for whatever stage they’re in. For example, millennials starting families have different priorities than boomers looking to downsize. The customer lifecycle applies to other industries, such as insurance, auto sales and even home renovations – just to name a few.

 

Build Loyalty

Optimize your customer lifecycle from initial engagement to retention and loyalty. Our easy, automated outreach (via the widget) helps maintain the connection and develop customer trust with engaging touchpoints along the way. You’re giving them a reason to do repeat business with you and to refer family and friends.

 

With Ownest, you can engage in their journey, not just their transaction.

 

Business Insights: The Dashboard

Your cloud-based dashboard allows you to stay on top of leads, conversions, reports and notifications, all in real-time. It’s a user-friendly visual snapshot that’s accessible from any device – desktop to mobile.

For Sales Staff

After the system intelligently screens and ranks leads using the Five Cs of credit, they are visually depicted in the dashboard using the stoplight colour system, so you’ll know your customer’s credit status at a glance. You’ll also have all the functionality of a CRM, including:

  • Application status – giving you visibility into the mortgage process

  • Document uploads – the system organizes it once the client does their part

  • Email tracking and open rates

  • Calls/appointments and engagement on the account

  • Shareable newsfeed, so you can engage your customers with useful industry info

  • Marketing ROI, such as lead sources and conversion rates

The dashboard is your automated super-assistant, monitoring every phase of every transaction, so you’ll know exactly where each deal is at and what needs to be done next.

For Managers

The platform also provides a customizable overview of employee and team performance data, whether sales or marketing, allowing you to identify and manage important KPIs for employee productivity and other ROI optimizing analytics across the organization.

With Ownest, you really can Know Your Customer (and your operations) like never before.

 

Click to learn how Pront-O provides key customer and business insights to help you lead the sales conversation.