Lenda invites real estate agents to ‘fire their loan officers’ with ‘TurboTax for mortgage’

Borrowers can complete the home loan process online from start to finish without a loan officer as middleman

Real estate startup Lenda is launching a platform today that will allow borrowers to complete the home loan process online from start to finish without a loan officer as middleman.

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Lenda’s platform lets borrowers receive rate quotes from Lenda, apply for a loan, sign lender disclosures, upload or snap photos of their documents, receive real-time status updates, process and close the loan — all online.

“This saves time and money, eliminates confusion, and provides for a happier mortgage experience,” said Lenda co-founder and CEO Jason van den Brand.

Screen shot of Lenda home page.

Screen shot of Lenda home page.

 

A combination of custom algorithms and integrations with technologies from other companies make it happen, he said. Lenda integrates with mortgage loan pricing engine LoanTek, electronic signature vendor DocuSign, online payment firm Stripe, and MeridianLink’s credit check toolkit CreditAPI.

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“A loan officer’s job responsibility is to do exactly what our software already does,” van den Brand said. “The whole mantra with real estate agents for us has been to (get them to) fire their loan officers. You’ll hear us say that again and again.”

In that sense, it’s the opposite of the approach taken by Pre Approve Me App, a recently launched mobile app that generates near-instant loan preapprovals vetted by loan officers.

“Lenda is great for busy people,” van den Brand said. “We had a dad of two young children who used Lenda because he works 80-hour weeks and couldn’t spend time in a banker’s office. He purchased his San Francisco home with Lenda in 20 days, completed entirely online.”

Most people go online to try to find lenders and then the process immediately goes offline, but Lenda is the only “true” online lending site, he said.

“Everyone who you think does online lending is just a lead generation site,” he said, with the actual loan process done in person. “Lenda’s goal is to enable homeowners to make smart home finance decisions without ever leaving their home or receiving a sales call.”


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