Fannie Mae: Announcement SVC-2017-04: Servicing Guide Updates

Investor Update
May 10, 2017

Announcement SVC-2017-04: Servicing Guide Updates

The Fannie Mae Servicing Guide has been updated to simplify servicing and make it easier to do business with us. These changes:

  • Align with Consumer Financial Protection Bureau rules that impact servicer communication responsibilities, borrower contact and workout attempts, and more.
  • Clarify escrow waiver evaluation requirements to promote objective and consistent evaluations using available standard servicing data.
  • Expand the eligibility for a mortgage loan modification incentive for a post-bankruptcy mortgage loan by addressing the time gap between reporting a bankruptcy-related delinquency status code and the beginning of the Trial Period Plan.
  • Improve our post-delivery servicing transfer approval process by changing Form 629, Request for Approval of Servicing or Subservicing Transfer, submission dates. This will allow a higher level of service from Fannie Mae.
  • Establish a collaborative review process between Fannie Mae and servicers before entering into agreements with a government insurer or guarantor. This reduces the risk of indemnification or other penalties related to reduced claim recoveries.
  • And more.

Read the Announcement for details.

For a summary of key updates in this Servicing Guide Announcement, view the video presented by Jenise Hight, Director of Servicing Policy.

Duty to Serve Plan posted for comment

This week, Fannie Mae’s proposed Underserved Markets Plan, required by the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Duty to Serve rule, was published for public comment. The draft Plan addresses the needs of America’s most challenging housing markets and focuses on three key underserved areas: manufactured housing, affordable housing preservation, and rural housing. To learn more, visit our Duty to Serve page to find links to our press release, our video overview, and, where you can access the draft Plan and submit feedback. FHFA is accepting public comments through July 10.  

Enhancements to SMDU coming this weekend

This weekend, Fannie Mae will implement enhancements to Servicing Management Default Underwriter™ (SMDU™), including support for the Fannie Mae Flex Modification, expanded Case Management functionality, and other updates. Please refer to the SMDU Version 7.3 Release Notes for more detailed information. As a reminder, to implement this release, SMDU will be unavailable to process transactions from 10 p.m. ET on Friday, May 12 until 3 p.m. ET on Saturday, May 13. If you have questions about this release, please contact your Fannie Mae Servicing Account Manager.

Impacts to HSSN and SMDU May 13-14

Due to the changes to investor reporting during the weekend of May 13, Fannie Mae recommends delaying case creation and closing from 6 p.m. ET, Saturday, May 13 to 8 a.m. ET, Sunday, May 14 to avoid exceptions as information between our systems may not be synchronized. This recommendation is intended for those who use SMDU Case Management functionality to create HomeSaver Solutions™ Network (HSSN) cases, as well as those creating cases directly on HSSN. Note that XML bulk file submissions for HSSN submitted during this timeframe will be held and processed on Monday, May 15. SMDU Auto Decision is not impacted; SMDU will remain available per the usual availability schedule.  

Updated Fannie Mae Standard Modification Interest Rate Adjustment Exhibit

This Exhibit provides the new Fannie Mae Standard Modification Interest Rate required for all Fannie Mae conventional mortgage loan modifications, excluding Fannie Mae HAMP Modifications. Click to view the Exhibit.

Looking for free loss mitigation training? Sign up for a live webinar.

Did you know that Fannie Mae provides participating servicers with free loss mitigation training? Our Know Your Options™ Customer CARE (Connect, Assess, Resolve, and Execute) team will present two live webinars in June. Sign up to learn how to leverage your own servicer model to develop rapport and establish consultative customer relationships, communicate more effectively with borrowers about their options to avoid foreclosure, increase your workout percentage, and more. Learn more and register today.  

Knowledge is power: Sign up for the new Servicer Learning Series webinar

Please join us for a new Servicer Learning Series webinar, hosted by the Servicer Support Center. We’ll discuss recent Servicing Guide Announcements, Flex Modification program highlights, SMDU User Interface features, and how to use Fannie Mae Connect to advance Simplifying Servicing™ efforts. This webinar, scheduled for May 22 and June 7, is recommended for general servicing, collections, foreclosure, default prevention, investor reporting, audit, and compliance personnel. Register here to take advantage of this opportunity.  

Building toward the future of housing. Read our 2016 Progress Report.

In 2016, we sought to deliver solutions that helped you meet your most important business challenges. We made it easier for you to do business with us. We empowered you to serve your borrowers faster and more simply, with initiatives like Day 1 Certainty™ and Simplifying Servicing. And, we partnered with fintech firms to help bring the digital mortgage closer to reality. Here are some highlights from the report:

  • $637 billion in mortgage finances across the country
  • 1.1 million home purchases
  • 1.4 million mortgage refinances
  • 724,000 units of affordable housing

We’re grateful for your business, and we’re working hard every day to earn it. Learn more in our 2016 Progress Report.  

We heard your feedback

Last year, we introduced two new formats for presenting our monthly Servicing Guide updates: a video and a recorded presentation, providing different mediums for you to learn about the rationale for policy changes included in our monthly Servicing Guide Announcement. Based on customer feedback, we’ve since expanded our monthly Announcements to include the rationale behind each of our policy changes and, as a result, will discontinue the monthly recorded presentation.  

Join us at these upcoming events:

  • May 15-16 | Ohio MBA Annual Convention | Columbus
  • May 22-23 | Texas MBS Annual Convention | San Antonio

View all events.

You may also be interested in…

State HFAs helping stabilize communities, driving loan volumes
Fannie Mae works with more than 40 state and local HFAs with annual loan volume in in the billions. Read more

Receive regular content updates by registering at The Home Story.

Recent Tweets

Consumers say their household income is significantly higher than it was a year ago. #HPSI:

May 10
Our #DutytoServe plan is now available for review. We look forward to your input:

May 9
Source: Fannie Mae



Alan Jaffa

Alan Jaffa is the chief executive officer for Safeguard, steering the company as the mortgage field services industry leader. He also serves on the board of advisors for SCG Partners, a middle-market private equity fund focused on diversifying and expanding Safeguard Properties’ business model into complimentary markets.

Alan joined Safeguard in 1995, learning the business from the ground up. He was promoted to chief operating officer in 2002, and was named CEO in May 2010. His hands-on experience has given him unique insights as a leader to innovate, improve and strengthen Safeguard’s processes to assure that the company adheres to the highest standards of quality and customer service.

Under Alan’s leadership, Safeguard has grown significantly with strategies that have included new and expanded services, technology investments that deliver higher quality and greater efficiency to clients, and strategic acquisitions. He takes a team approach to process improvement, involving staff at all levels of the organization to address issues, brainstorm solutions, and identify new and better ways to serve clients.

In 2008, Alan was recognized by Crain’s Cleveland Business in its annual “40-Under-40” profile of young leaders. He also was named a NEO Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year® finalist in 2013.


Chief Operating Officer

Michael Greenbaum

Michael Greenbaum is the chief operating officer for Safeguard. Mike has been instrumental in aligning operations to become more efficient, effective, and compliant with our ever-changing industry requirements. Mike has a proven track record of excellence, partnership and collaboration at Safeguard. Under Mike’s leadership, all operational departments of Safeguard have reviewed, updated and enhanced their business processes to maximize efficiency and improve quality control.

Mike joined Safeguard in July 2010 as vice president of REO and has continued to take on additional duties and responsibilities within the organization, including the role of vice president of operations in 2013 and then COO in 2015.

Mike built his business career in supply-chain management, operations, finance and marketing. He has held senior management and executive positions with Erico, a manufacturing company in Solon, Ohio; Accel, Inc., a packaging company in Lewis Center, Ohio; and McMaster-Carr, an industrial supply company in Aurora, Ohio.

Before entering the business world, Mike served in the U.S. Army, Ordinance Branch, and specialized in supply chain management. He is a distinguished graduate of West Point (U.S. Military Academy), where he majored in quantitative economics.



Sean Reddington

Sean Reddington is the new Chief Information Officer for Safeguard Properties LLC. Sean has over 15+ years of experience in Information Services Management with a strong focus on Product and Application Management. Sean is responsible for Safeguard’s technological direction, including planning, implementation and maintaining all operational systems

Sean has a proven record of accomplishment for increasing operational efficiencies, improving customer service levels, and implementing and maintaining IT initiatives to support successful business processes.  He has provided the vision and dedicated leadership for key technologies for Fortune 100 companies, and nationally recognized consulting firms including enterprise system architecture, security, desktop and database management systems. Sean possesses strong functional and system knowledge of information security, systems and software, contracts management, budgeting, human resources and legal and related regulatory compliance.

Sean joined Safeguard Properties LLC from RenPSG Inc. which is a nationally leading Philintropic Software Platform in the Fintech space. He oversaw the organization’s technological direction including planning, implementing and maintaining the best practices that align with all corporate functions. He also provided day-to-day technology operations, enterprise security, information risk and vulnerability management, audit and compliance, security awareness and training.

Prior to RenPSG, Sean worked for DMI Consulting as a Client Success Director where he guided the delivery in a multibillion-dollar Fortune 500 enterprise client account. He was responsible for all project deliveries in terms of quality, budget and timeliness and led the team to coordinate development and definition of project scope and limitations. Sean also worked for KPMG Consulting in their Microsoft Practice and Technicolor’s Ebusiness Division where he had responsibility for application development, maintenance, and support.

Sean is a graduate of Rutgers University with a Bachelor of Arts and received his Masters in International Business from Central Michigan University. He was also a commissioned officer in the United States Air Force prior to his career in the business world.


General Counsel and Executive Vice President

Linda Erkkila, Esq.

Linda Erkkila is the general counsel and executive vice president for Safeguard and oversees the legal, human resources, training, and compliance departments. Linda’s responsibilities cover regulatory issues that impact Safeguard’s operations, risk mitigation, enterprise strategic planning, human resources and training initiatives, compliance, litigation and claims management, and mergers, acquisition and joint ventures.

Linda assures that Safeguard’s strategic initiatives align with its resources, leverage opportunities across the company, and contemplate compliance mandates. Her practice spans over 20 years, and Linda’s experience covers regulatory disclosure, corporate governance compliance, risk assessment, executive compensation, litigation management, and merger and acquisition activity. Her experience at a former Fortune 500 financial institution during the subprime crisis helped develop Linda’s pro-active approach to change management during periods of heightened regulatory scrutiny.

Linda previously served as vice president and attorney for National City Corporation, as securities and corporate governance counsel for Agilysys Inc., and as an associate at Thompson Hine LLP. She earned her JD at Cleveland-Marshall College of Law. Linda holds a degree in economics from Miami University and an MBA. In 2017, Linda was named as both a “Woman of Influence” by HousingWire and as a “Leading Lady” by MReport.


Chief Financial Officer

Joe Iafigliola

Joe Iafigliola is the Chief Financial Officer for Safeguard. Joe is responsible for the Control, Quality Assurance, Business Development, Accounting & Information Security departments, and is a Managing Director of SCG Partners, a middle-market private equity fund focused on diversifying and expanding Safeguard Properties’ business model into complimentary markets.

Joe has been in a wide variety of roles in finance, supply chain management, information systems development, and sales and marketing. His career includes senior positions with McMaster-Carr Supply Company, Newell/Rubbermaid, and Procter and Gamble.

Joe has an MBA from The Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University, is a Certified Management Accountant (CMA), and holds a bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University’s Honors Accounting program.


AVP, High Risk and Investor Compliance

Steve Meyer

Steve Meyer is the assistant vice president of high risk and investor compliance for Safeguard. In this role, Steve is responsible for managing our clients’ conveyance processes, Safeguard’s investor compliance team and developing our working relationships with cities and municipalities around the country. He also works directly with our clients in our many outreach efforts and he represents Safeguard at a number of industry conferences each year.

Steve joined Safeguard in 1998 as manager over the hazard claims team. He was instrumental in the development and creation of policies, procedures and operating protocol. Under Steve’s leadership, the department became one of the largest within Safeguard. In 2002, he assumed responsibility for the newly-formed high risk department, once again building its success. Steve was promoted to director over these two areas in 2007, and he was promoted to assistant vice president in 2012.

Prior to joining Safeguard, Steve spent 10 years within the insurance industry, holding a number of positions including multi-line property adjuster, branch claims supervisor, and multi-line and subrogation/litigation supervisor. Steve is a graduate of Grove City College.


AVP, Operations

Jennifer Jozity

Jennifer Jozity is the assistant vice president of operations, overseeing inspections, REO and property preservation for Safeguard. Jen ensures quality work is performed in the field and internally, to meet and exceed our clients’ expectations. Jen has demonstrated the ability to deliver consistent results in order audit and order management.  She will build upon these strengths in order to deliver this level of excellence in both REO and property preservation operations.

Jen joined Safeguard in 1997 and was promoted to director of inspections operations in 2009 and assistant vice president of inspections operations in 2012.

She graduated from Cleveland State University with a degree in business.


AVP, Finance

Jennifer Anspach

Jennifer Anspach is the assistant vice president of finance for Safeguard. She is responsible for the company’s national workforce of approximately 1,000 employees. She manages recruitment strategies, employee relations, training, personnel policies, retention, payroll and benefits programs. Additionally, Jennifer has oversight of the accounts receivable and loss functions formerly within the accounting department.

Jennifer joined the company in April 2009 as a manager of accounting and finance and a year later was promoted to director. She was named AVP of human capital in 2014. Prior to joining Safeguard, she held several management positions at OfficeMax and InkStop in both operations and finance.

Jennifer is a graduate of Youngstown State University. She was named a Crain’s Cleveland Business Archer Award finalist for HR Executive of the Year in 2017.


AVP, Application Architecture

Rick Moran

Rick Moran is the assistant vice president of application architecture for Safeguard. Rick is responsible for evolving the Safeguard IT systems. He leads the design of Safeguard’s enterprise application architecture. This includes Safeguard’s real-time integration with other systems, vendors and clients; the future upgrade roadmap for systems; and standards designed to meet availability, security, performance and goals.

Rick has been with Safeguard since 2011. During that time, he has led the system upgrades necessary to support Safeguard’s growth. In addition, Rick’s team has designed and implemented several innovative systems.

Prior to joining Safeguard, Rick was director of enterprise architecture at Revol Wireless, a privately held CDMA Wireless provider in Ohio and Indiana, and operated his own consulting firm providing services to the manufacturing, telecommunications, and energy sectors.


AVP, Technology Infrastructure and Cloud Services

Steve Machovina

Steve Machovina is the assistant vice president of technology infrastructure and cloud services for Safeguard. He is responsible for the overall management and design of Safeguard’s hybrid cloud infrastructure. He manages all technology engineering staff who support data centers, telecommunications, network, servers, storage, service monitoring, and disaster recovery.

Steve joined Safeguard in November 2013 as director of information technology operations.

Prior to joining Safeguard, Steve was vice president of information technology at Revol Wireless, a privately held wireless provider in Ohio and Indiana. He also held management positions with Northcoast PCS and Corecomm Communications, and spent nine years as a Coast Guard officer and pilot.

Steve holds a BBA in management information systems from Kent State University in Ohio and an MBA from Wayne State University in Michigan.


Assistant Vice president of Application Development

Steve Goberish

Steve Goberish, is the assistant vice president of application development for Safeguard. He is responsible for the maintenance and evolution of Safeguard’s vendor systems ensuring high-availability, security and scalability while advancing the vendor products’ capabilities and enhancing the vendor experience.

Prior to joining Safeguard, Steve was a senior technical architect and development manager at First American Title Insurance, a publicly held title insurance provider based in southern California, in addition to managing and developing applications in multiple sectors from insurance to VOIP.

Steve has a bachelor’s degree from Kent State University in Ohio.