National Property Preservation Conference 2005 Summary

Second Annual National Property Preservation Conference
Helps Mortgage Servicing Industry Align Efforts

Washington, D.C. – All sectors of the mortgage field servicing industry gathered in Washington, D.C. November 16-18 to discuss disaster issues, guidelines and best practices at the National Property Preservation Conference. This was the second annual conference facilitated by Safeguard Properties , and the theme, “We’re all in this together. Let’s make it work!” set the tone for open communication and unity of the different sectors.

“You constantly and unselfishly strive to open communication and look for better ways of doing what we do,” said Jeanne Fairweather, Ohio Savings Bank, of Safeguard.

With an agenda specifically geared toward current industry issues, investors, servicers, lenders, field service providers and representatives from the Department of Homeland Security, FEMA, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, VA, HUD and the MBA utilized an open-forum discussion to ask questions, broach concerns and build industry cooperation and unity.

“We are not perfect. We make mistakes. At times we need clarification. Sometimes we are right, other times we are not right at all,” explained Safeguard CEO Robert Klein of the mortgage servicing industry. “But we must take responsibility for it and provide accurate information. That is the purpose of the conference. To get as much clarification as possible.”

The conference was organized into five sessions with focuses on general issues in light of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma, investor-specific disaster concerns, M&M and servicer best practices and servicer and lender issues involving M&Ms and HUD.

HUD Office of Single Family Asset Management Deputy Director Laurie Maggiano set the conference tone in her keynote address expressing the importance of communication and understanding throughout the property preservation industry for successful recovery efforts in the wake of the hurricane disaster.

"What we do in life echoes in eternity," said Maggiano, quoting the movie “Gladiator.”

Former Louisiana Senator John B. Breaux, who retired earlier this year after more than 30 years in Congress, addressed conference attendees and provided a firsthand account of how to improve the disaster recovery process by strengthening communication and working with the government to develop legislation for the future. While the structural impacts of the disasters are physically visible, Sen. Breaux shared statistics on the loss of jobs and population in New Orleans and surrounding areas and how these negative impacts will affect the area’s future.

"You learn from these disasters.  And, if you don't, it's another disaster," Sen. Breaux said.

Conference discussions, led by panelists who addressed specific issues, were able to provide clarification on many topics, including aspects of HUD’s recent Mortgagee Letter 2005-41, approval and compliance policies, and HUD and other investor’s property preservation guidelines.

“The conference was well done and a true success. The panel of industry experts representing various vendors, investors, servicers and concerns was excellent,” said Geoffrey White, HSBC Mortgage.  For additional feedback on the conference click on link below; 

Reception Interviews

The conference was a successful venue to open communication lines and develop cooperation among all segments of the mortgage servicing industry. Building effective practices and consensus ensures unity, fosters teamwork and solidifies to all industry members Safeguard’s theme for the conference—“We’re all in this together.  Let’s make it work!”

For additional comments and to listen to the audio from the National Property Preservation Conference II, click on the link below;

National P&P Conference II Audio

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