The Mortgage Industry Standards Maintenance Organization (MISMO), the real estate finance industry’s standards organization and a subsidiary of the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), announced this week the establishment of a development workgroup (DWG) focused on analyzing and developing standards for reverse mortgages.
The development of the group is currently in the discovery phase, where it will seek to identify and recruit key participants; more closely analyze reverse mortgage use cases; establish priorities and a plan for key deliverables; and evaluate existing MISMO products and initiatives that could have application to the needs of the reverse working group.
“Given the current interest rate environment and demographic trends, there is potential for increased borrower demand for reverse mortgages and a subsequent need for standardization,” said David Coleman, president of MISMO, in a statement announcing the group’s formation. “Developing and leveraging MISMO standards for the reverse mortgage industry will serve as an opportunity to mainstream programs, which at times can be seen as niche.”
When reached by RMD, Coleman explained that new attention on the reverse mortgage space helped to spur the development of the DWG.
“There is a renewed interest in the reverse mortgage space, and we are looking forward to convening industry professionals as part of MISMO’s Reverse Mortgage Development Workgroup (DWG) to collaborate on this timely topic,” Coleman said. “Over the years, MISMO has laid a foundation that has enabled us to leverage previous progress on this issue today and accelerate advancement in the reverse lending part of the market.”
According to the announcement, MISMO has identified key drivers for this new initiative, including a need for holistic support for reverse programs for new and existing MISMO subscribers and standardizing data in an industry-standard format to increase efficiency among stakeholders.
The group will also aim to expand MISMO standards to new lenders, vendors, and technology providers that specialize in reverse; and to create new efficiencies for MISMO members who operate on both the forward and reverse sides of the mortgage business.
“Industry support is necessary to ensure that all relevant needs are considered and to confirm that key activities are identified, addressed, and incorporated into the Reverse Mortgage Roadmap,” MISMO said in its announcement. “The Reverse Mortgage DWG will conduct regular meetings via conference call. Upon completion of the roadmap, subsequent phases may be arranged to begin working on the identified priorities established by the DWG.”
Participation in the reverse DWG is open to anyone regardless of MISMO membership status, according to the organization. This is the latest round of collaboration between MISMO and the reverse industry.
Previously in 2010, MISMO announced an alliance agreement with the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association to collaborate on the development of technology standards for the exchange of information about reverse mortgages.