- U.S. Bank will be "one of the first" banks to test a one-tap pre-approval product piloted by digital mortgage technology provider Blend, the bank's executive vice president said, according to HousingWire.
- The platform may help banks better compete with the likes of Quicken Loans, which became the U.S.'s biggest residential mortgage lender in 2017, according to CNBC.
- A "phased rollout" of the platform could bring the technology to Wells Fargo by the end of the year, HousingWire said. Wells, Quicken's closest competitor in the mortgage market, is among the 170 banks and credit unions that partner with Blend.
Quicken's Rocket Mortgage brand set a new standard in the mortgage market, shortening the time it took borrowers to get preapproved from days to as few as eight minutes.
U.S. Bank had previously used Blend's technology to cut the preapproval process to less than 30 minutes, Tom Wind, executive vice president of consumer lending, told CNBC. Blend's one-tap further condenses that process to about three minutes, Wind said.
Blend said its new technology "enables lenders to verify a consumer's assets, income, employment, and liabilities with source data and zero friction, significantly reducing the amount of paperwork to review and saving time for the lender."
Borrowers can scroll through options on the bank's mobile app or website, such as their preferred type of residence and the term of the loan. A preapproval letter that takes just a few clicks to generate could give prospective buyers an edge when browsing for homes.
The platform adapts innovations in online shopping to the mortgage market, Blend CEO Nima Ghamsari said. "It'd be weird if I went to Amazon and I had to apply to see a list of products that I could afford," he told CNBC. "There's no form to fill out. We're bringing all the pieces needed to get it to work for mortgages."
The launch marks U.S. Bank's second investment in technology this week. It signed data-sharing agreements with seven fintechs and data aggregators and will deliver customer account information directly through application programming interfaces, American Banker reported Tuesday.
Blend, too, has arguably gained backing and credibility this year. Former Fannie Mae CEO Tim Mayopoulos joined the company as president in January. Software company Salesforce announced in May that it made an undisclosed "strategic investment" in Blend.