Despite steep financial losses, mortgage tech company Blend continues to add some of America’s largest mortgage lenders to its client roster.
On Tuesday, the fintech and PNC Bank announced a partnership that allows customers to digitally apply for a mortgage and import bank/payroll information directly into their application.
Once an application is submitted, customers have a single portal for tracking its status, completing outstanding tasks, reviewing and electronically signing loan documentation. PNC mortgage loan officers can also collaborate real-time with customers through their online portal, the bank said.
Blend, which went public in 2021 after being founded nine years ago, offers white-label technology to power mortgage applications for banks including Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank.
“Over the last few years, we’ve seen first-hand the growing customer demand for simplified, digital-first interactions,” said Peter McCarthy, PNC executive vice president and head of Mortgage.
The enhanced mortgage application platform aims to decrease the time it takes to locate necessary documents and provide digital self-service technology for customers, McCarthy added.
Lower costs, streamlined mortgage process and advanced analytical and marketing capabilities are priorities for mortgage lenders as gain-on-sale margins shrink in a high-rate environment. About 54% of mortgage executives pointed to online direct-to-consumer lenders as their biggest competitors due to these reasons, according to a recent Fannie Mae mortgage lender sentiment survey.
Blend’s goal remains to partner with companies to build the “digital-first future of financial services,” Erik Wrobel, head of product at Blend said in a statement.
Blend reported a $478.4 million loss in the second quarter, following a $73.5 million loss in the first quarter. Due to the challenging environment for mortgage businesses, the firm eliminated more than 400 job positions in April and August, representing 25% of its workforce, according to the firm.
In its second quarter earnings call, Blend executives said they would be conservative in managing the company and plan to focus on products with higher returns on investment.
PNC Mortgage originated $9.88 billion in the first six months of this year, ranked 29th on Inside Mortgage Finance‘s top mortgage lenders in origination volume.