Servicers are focusing more on valuations in this challenging market, according to speakers at the MBA's National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo.Employees in loss mitigation are contacting those in the real-estate owned department to see if they can predict how much a property will sell for if it goes into REO. The end list price at REO is typically very different from early valuation, depending on what happens in local markets, the speakers said. Some companies have their own appraisers or another third-party appraiser who can reconcile values. Panel members said the industry can expect to see the deployment of artificial intelligence to report values, create offers and automated counter offers. "The rules of the game have changed," said Scott Freeze, loss mitigation manager, strategic initiatives, Option One Mortgage. "A lot of times, the [property value is] wrong, which is why loss mitigation teams are working together with foreclosure teams to keep borrowers in their home."

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