Fifth Third Bank, National Association, announced a strategic partnership with Blend, a leader in digital lending technology, to digitize its mortgage process in a time when home purchasing has reached its highest levels in more than a decade.
Growing customer demand and increased comfort with digital experiences further accelerated by the pandemic has driven the need for financial institutions to prioritize digital experiences to better engage their customers. The partnership with Blend is one more initiative in the bank’s customer-centric digital strategy to enable a simple and efficient end-to-end mortgage experience.
“Customers want a simple way to apply for a mortgage online, yet they also don’t want to go it completely alone,” said Chris Shroat, head of mortgage for Fifth Third. “Partnering with Blend allows us to offer a simple, seamless online home financing experience. And our mortgage loan originators are there to shepherd the process to help ensure our customers are confident as they make what likely is the biggest purchase of their lives.”
Fifth Third has rolled out the new application to its mortgage specialists across 11 states for mortgages and refinancing. Since launching the new digital process, the average customer satisfaction score has increased while the average time to fund a loan has decreased.
This partnership allows Fifth Third customers to digitally apply for a mortgage, and use things that they know (such as bank or payroll credentials) to complete their application, saving time from having to hunt and find documents. Once the application is in, they can use an online portal to track the status of their loan application, upload documents, consent and sign electronically and receive reminders if there is additional information needed. Their mortgage loan officers and processors are available and can collaborate in real time if they want. Not only does the experience with Blend embody the shift to innovative digital solutions, it also has automated much of the formerly manual information gathering that was a burden on applicants and employees alike.
“Our goal is to anticipate challenges that may arise in the market and help our lender partners adapt quickly to meet the needs of their customers, especially during tough times,” said Blend Co-founder and CEO Nima Ghamsari. “Our work with Fifth Third is a testament to this, and we’re proud to partner with them to allow future and current homeowners to have a simple and efficient end-to-end mortgage experience.”
Through Blend, financial institutions empower consumers to choose how they want to engage with their bank and help their loan teams to close loans quickly and easily without necessitating in-person interaction. For more information on how Blend partners with financial institutions, visit blend.com.