WASHINGTON - Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae, and the Mortgage Bankers Association are working together on several projects to improve the flow of lending information.

And if they succeed, the results would facilitate development of Fannie's industrywide computer system.

For the past two years, the three secondary-market agencies have labored to devise common electronic data interchange standards for the delivery of loans.

Pilot Project

Such standards allow electronic communication between industry partners, regardless of the computer hardware they use.

As part of a pilot project, Countrywide Credit Industries of Pasadena, Calif., Norwest Mortgage Inc. of Des Moines, and Miamisburg, Ohio-based National City Mortgage Co. now use new data interchange standards to transmit certain borrower and property information when they deliver loans to the secondary market agencies.

All lenders will be able to use the new standards by 1995, and would be given 18 to 24 months to comply, said Rick Amatucci, vice president for industry technology initiatives at Fannie Mae.

Industrywide Standards

At the Mortgage Bankers Association convention in October, the companies also will present draft data interchange standards for the monthly servicing reports filed by lenders. These will become industrywide starting in late 1994, Mr. Amatucci said.

The association, the secondary, market companies, mortgage insurers, credit bureaus, and others are working "to standardize virtually every transaction" in the mortgage process, he said.

These standards are critical to the efforts of Fannie Mae vice chairman Frank Raines to link the industry electronically.

Clearinghouse Planned

The secondary-market agencies will announce another joint initiative - the whole-loan book entry system - at the convention.

The aim is to establish an electronic clearinghouse that would record the sale of mortgages. The clearinghouse would be similar to the system used by the securities industry to record the sale of stocks and bonds.

"Today when customers do business with us, they either send the document to us or a third-party document custodian. Every time the servicing moves, our customers have to go down to the county clerk's and record that. If the new servicer does not use the same document custodian, documents have to move," said Mr. Amatucci.

With the new system, when the loan is closed, the deed or mortgage will be recorded in the name of the whole-loan book system. If the loan or its servicing rights changed hands, that would be recorded electronically at the clearinghouse, he said.

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