<p>By ELAINE KINGOFF-BARR CU Times Editor-in-Chief TUKWILA, Wash. – Joe Brancucci, vice president of lending and chief lending officer for Boeing Employees’ Credit Union, and president/CEO of Prime Alliance Solutions had a good reason to celebrate the new year. Not only did the one-year old CUSO formed in partnership between the credit union and information technology company DEXMA to offer credit unions an easy-to-use online lending solution, finish the year stronger than it ever expected, credit unions using the company’s solution had mortgage lending numbers to crow about as well. Boeing Employees’ CU, the alpha site for the online mortgage lending solution, closed loan volume increased 393% with six more staff. In addition the origination cost per loan at the credit union dropped from $1,273 to $338. Beta sites Patelco CU increased closed loan volume by 400%, with seven fewer staff, and Vandenburg CU increased closed loan volume by 533% with an increase of 1.5 staff. Even with refinanced loans out of the equation, “these are incredulously high numbers,” said Brancucci. At press time, Prime Alliance had 14 live credit union sites, and 25 credit unions and three CUSOs under contract. There are an additional 11 credit unions that are using Prime Alliance Solution in varying stages. Some, for example, are only using the solution internally and have not made it available to their members. Given last year’s low mortgage rates and high mortgage loan demand by members, “Prime Alliance Solutions allowed members to take advantage of the great rates when they came up,” said Brancucci. “If credit unions were unable to deal with members’ mortgage loan demands, the members would have likely found someone else who could take their application and process it quickly.” Prime Alliance’s streamlined application process allows CU members to complete their mortgage application and submit it online without using a credit union loan officer. For credit unions, that means increased loan volume and lower overhead costs. In addition, since Fannie Mae’s Desktop Underwriter is built into the Prime Alliance solution and power the product, mortgage loans that are approved conform to secondary market standards and can be more easily sold on the secondary market. “We didn’t miss anyone with Prime Alliance Solutions. It allowed the credit unions to approve the applicant immediately and lock them into a rate,” he said. In fact, Prime Alliance was able to take streamlined applications from members so quickly, it wound up moving some of its more experienced staff into the application closing area. “It was an dubiously enviable position to be in,” said Brancucci. “Prime Alliance Solutions has allowed credit unions to position themselves more competitively in the mortgage market and compete with the big guys,” said Brancucci. With everything Prime Alliance has lined up for 2002, this year should be as exciting as last year for the CUSO. The $33.5 billion company already does business in 11 states and serves 3.5 million members. In 2002, there are 17 credit unions and two CUSOs in seven other states that have committed to join Prime Alliance. In February, Prime Alliance plans to launch a version of an online lending solution designed for small and mid-size credit unions – Prime Solutions Lite. City County Credit Union of Fort Lauderdale, Fla. has been chosen as the alpha site. In June, the CUSO plans to add functionality to its existing Prime Alliance solution. Among the new features will be second mortgages, VA loans, and back office capabilities. – [email protected]</p>

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