A Silicon Valley start-up is rolling out software that allows customers of lenders including U.S. Bank and Wells Fargo to apply for home equity loans through their banking apps while shaving weeks off the process.
The tech company, Blend, has already made inroads in the realm of home loans: It processed $230 billion in mortgage applications last year for banks and credit unions. Now it's hoping to grab more of the overall real estate loan market with products that let homeowners tap equity in their property.
The upside for customers of banks that use Blend's software is faster access to cash: A process that typically takes five to eight weeks can get done in about three weeks, according to Blend CEO Nima Ghamsari. Its product is a digital portal that saves users the hassle of providing financial documents by sourcing information directly from payroll providers or the Internal Revenue Service, he said.
"The way it used to be was that people had to fill out a paper form or work with a loan officer to get the home equity process started," Ghamsari said.
Applicants would "be asked to pull a bunch of documents like pay stubs to verify income, their credit situation, and to do things like an appraisal and get your title and then have documents sent to you physically for you to sign and review," he said. "We're taking that analog process and making it digital."