The brainchild of reverse mortgage consultancy Wendover Consulting and training and technology provider Reverse Focus (formerly Reverse Fortunes), a new reverse mortgage training product is now available to serve as an official reverse mortgage education tool for originators in the space, as well as those looking to enter it.
Developed in part by Wendover’s Ken Kanady, former learning and development manager for reverse mortgage training at Wells Fargo along with a technology platform provided with the help of Reverse Focus, the creators see this new program, Reverse Basics, as having a widespread impact on the industry’s education and continuing education.
“It is the only reverse mortgage learning resource that is an online tool in the industry,” Wendover Founder Jeff Taylor told RMD. “You’ve heard: ‘the next best thing since sliced bread?’ Well this is sliced bread. There’s nothing like this that exists.”
The program will provide subscription-based access to companies as well as individuals who can take an online course, receiving a “certification” when they have completed it, says Shannon Hicks, vice president of product development for Reverse Focus. It will consist of a series of slides with quizzes and checkpoints the student must pass in order to complete the course, which covers roughly three hours of content. The cost varies depending on the number of employees a company signs on.
“This is not so much a training event but more of a learning tool,” Hicks says. “It will be updated on a monthly basis, as our industry is ever changing. Students will have access up to a year at a time. Even for the seasoned professional, it’s a nice place to go.”
With regulators such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau seeking specifics from lenders when it comes to their reverse mortgage training and continuing education, the launch of Reverse Basics coincides with a more stringent regulatory environment. It is not an “official” certification, but can serve as an unofficial one that regulators can recognize as a consistent tool within reverse mortgages.
“Particularly with increasing regulation and compliance, we know when mortgage companies are audited, regulators want to know about your training program,” Taylor says. “Ginnie Mae wants to know that now, too.”
For companies in the forward space exploring the reverse mortgage product as well as companies that have existed in the space for years, the program can be useful for originators of varying experience levels as well as companies of different sizes, the founders say.
“We think this is going to be the secret sauce,” Taylor says. “If you have 10 loan officers, this is wonderful. If you have 500 loan officers, this is better. Everyone is put through the same process.”
Written by Elizabeth Ecker