Disgraced former SoFi CEO Mike Cagney is back as CEO of a new venture, just over a year after resigning from the company he helped found over sexual harassment allegations. Now Cagney’s new fintech startup, Figure, is launching Figure Home Equity Loan Plus, a digital loan product available in 25 states that touts a 5-minute approval time and five-day funding for loans ranging from $15,000 to $100,000.
Traditional Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) loans take anywhere from 30 to 45 days to complete and requires borrowers to provide an estimated property value, documentation for all sources of income (e.g. W-2, social security, retirement or pension benefits), proof of homeowners, hazard and flood insurance, as well as documentation for any other sources of debt, including car, student, and mortgage loans, or other home equity accounts.
Figure Chief Marketing Officer Wendy Harrington says Figure Home Equity Loan Plus streamlines this process by allowing homeowners to complete everything digitally — making it easier for underwriters to verify and process the loan.
“We’re transforming the entire customer experience by creating a faster, simpler, and more convenient way for homeowners to access the equity in their homes,” said Harrington in a statement. “The status quo was far from ideal, so we reimagined it and applied technology to the problem.”
To apply for Figure’s Plus product, homeowners must fill out an online form with their name, birthdate, address, property type, financing purpose, and annual household income.
Based on that information, borrowers are then pre-qualified for a number of loan options with a fixed term of 5, 7, 10 or 15 years and varying annual percentage rates (APR) starting at 5.99 percent.
After choosing the preferred loan, homeowners must upload their photo ID, link their primary bank account, complete a video call with an eNotary, and eSign their loan documents.
Figure says borrowers won’t have to pay appraisal fees, title fees, late fees, or pre-payment penalties, just a loan origination fee that is 1 to 3 percent of the initial drawn amount.
Harrington told Reuters that Figure will use blockchain technology to track loan information, and that the company will hold the loans on its balance sheet, but there are plans to sell or securitize them.
Beyond Figure Home Equity Loan Plus, Figure has a waitlist for two other products — Sell and Lease Back, a reverse mortgage alternative for homeowners 62 and older with a home buy-back option, and an unnamed wealth management tool.
Cagney and his wife, June Ou, founded Figure in February, and in April the company raised $50M in Venture Round funding from lead investors DCM Ventures, Ribbit Capital, and participation from Mithril Capital Management. According to a report by TechCrunch, DCM Ventures also invested in SoFi in 2012, a year after the company’s launch.
Cagney and Ou both left SoFi in September 2017 amid multiple sexual harassment claims against Cagney, a wrongful termination lawsuit, and allegations of loan improprieties and fraudulent accounting.
According to an explosive New York Times report, Cagney sent unwanted and sexually explicit text messages to a subordinate. One former employee quoted by the paper said the environment at SoFi’s main office was “like a frat house… You would find people having sex in their cars and in the parking lot. It was a free-for-all.” Cagney later admitted to having an affair with a subordinate in The Wall Street Journal.