May 31, 2011 11:00 ET

Integration of Comprehensive Appraisal Management Into Xetus' Loan Management System Is First of Its Kind

With Appraisals Taking a Critical Role in Lending Decisions, Lenders Increasingly Need Efficient Oversight of Appraisal Orders

PALO ALTO, CA--(Marketwire - May 31, 2011) - The integration of Palo Alto, CA-based Xetus' ( XetusOne Loan Management System (LMS) and Cincinnati, OH-based Southwest Financial Services, Ltd.'s (SFS) ( valuation services enables lenders to fully manage appraisals through an LMS for the first time ever. The one-of-a-kind integration allows lenders using XetusOne to access valuation products through the LMS, without having to re-key data elsewhere. Terence Kent, Xetus' chief technology officer, says pulling appraisal management into the LMS represents an outstanding service level jump for Xetus and SFS clients. "We have succeeded in bringing the entire valuation process into XetusOne -- from entering the initial order to tracking the appraisal's progress and receiving the final report. Our customers can order a wide variety of valuation products from SFS through XetusOne, receive in-system updates on status changes and have the completed report imported automatically into the loan folder."

Integration is Perfect Solution to Lending Industry's Need
XetusOne, which already enables the comprehensive management of a loan, including origination, subordination and modification, through efficient use of a Web-based "Software-as-a-Service" model, enters a class of its own with the new appraisal management capability that no other LMS has captured. Other providers, at most, can collect data from users and deliver an initial appraisal request to an appraisal service. No other LMS provider can manage the entire appraisal process.

The significance of appraisal management integration is evident as the role of appraisals in the loan approval process takes center stage. "The appraisal is certainly more important than ever before. Lenders are requiring the traditional full appraisal in almost every case, and being able to manage the appraisals on the same LMS platform as all other loan-processing aspects is a considerable advantage," says Kent.

Integration Boosts Lender Efficiency
Rick Bateman, regional sales manager of SFS, reports that Xetus' attention to their mutual customer's needs prompted the integration. Once Xetus determined the need for more efficiency in appraisal management, the process of integration occurred rapidly. Bateman says it took several months for Xetus to develop and install the integration. "Xetus' work during the development process was outstanding," he says. "It was extremely professional and accommodating to us, and we were able to integrate quickly and inexpensively so that our lender client could process loans more efficiently."

Kent describes the decision to integrate appraisal management with XetusOne as an easy one. "One of the most common pieces of feedback LMS vendors hear is the difficulty of ordering and tracking appraisals," he explains. "When we set out to design the integration, our focus was to eliminate these difficulties. The goal was to create a complete solution that would provide more efficiency for our clients."

Integration Enhances Workflow without Additional Cost
Bateman also noted that the quality of the final integration was superb and streamlined the workflow. A significant advantage for users derives from XetusOne's transparency and collaborative capabilities, which allow multiple users to track a loan appraisal's progress. Any user with proper authorization can view all loan appraisal information in the system. "SFS' priority is to make sure our lender client is happy with our services. The resulting integration has allowed our client to work through the appraisal process in a much easier manner. The feedback from our client has been nothing but positive," says Bateman.

"The synergy between SFS, Xetus and our mutual client was excellent. Other platforms we've dealt with have not always gone smoothly," says Bateman. "Oftentimes, for our lender clients there were more costs associated with those platforms. In this case, however, our client experienced a big jump in ease of ordering and managing without undergoing additional cost."

About Xetus
Xetus ( pioneered the development of "software as a service" (Saas) in the mortgage industry. Users access its service through standard Internet web browsers, while Xetus updates the product transparently. Xetus provides powerful, easy-to-use mortgage loan processing to lenders, brokers, service providers and investors collaboratively in real-time over the Internet in a secure environment. Xetus is partnered with some of the country's major credit organizations, underwriting and selling entities, mortgage insurers, automatic valuation and compliance providers.

About Southwest Financial Services Ltd.
Southwest Financial Services, Ltd. ( is an industry-leading provider of risk mitigation loan settlement solutions, including title, valuation and flood determination services. Since its inception in 1983, the company has led the way in meeting the needs of lending institutions, including many of the nation's largest lenders. Southwest Financial's unwavering commitment to customer service provides the framework for its proven solutions and innovative technology.

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