Blockchain for Banking News Real estate

Figure rolls out blockchain mortgage registry system to lending partners

house mortgage blockchain

Two years ago, we wrote about Figure Lending using the Provenance blockchain to log the current ownership of a mortgage in its Digital Asset Registration Technologies (DART) solution in conjunction with asset manager Apollo. Now, DART is rolling out to lending partners.

Stepping back, Figure is a multifaceted company. Figure Technology Services founded the Provenance blockchain and its subsidiary Figure Lending advances home equity loans (HELOCs), with $9 billion lent so far. It packages some of those up as asset backed securities (ABS), with the ABS tokenized on the Provenance blockchain. 

One of its many offerings is DART, which provides a solution for originating, pledging and selling loans. The loans are in the form of eNotes, a kind of promissory note that makes transferring it as a non fungible token on DART easier. Figure says it’s a more efficient alternative to the existing offerings. For example, the loans are e-signed, and there’s no need for manual reconciliations. Given it uses blockchain, transactions can be instantaneous without settlement risk.

DART competes with MERS mortgage registry

Today the MERS mortgage registry system dominates the U.S. home lending sector. MERS is often registered as the lender but acts as the nominee for the true lender, whose identity is logged on the centralized MERS system. Rather than having to update official public registries every time a mortgage changes hands, the new mortgage owner is logged on MERS. The company is a subsidiary of ICE, the New York Stock Exchange owner. Hence, DART has some serious competition.

“Offering DART to our partners represents a transformative opportunity in the mortgage industry, helping to usher in an era of digitization and expedited transactional processing,” said Jackie Frommer, President of Figure Technology Solutions. “We believe that expanding the use of DART technology through our partners will not only increase safeguards and transparency, but also foster a faster and more efficient process that benefits all stakeholders.”

So far the solution supports HELOCs but it plans to support other types of products not limited to home loans. Synergy One Lending is the first partner to adopt the solution.

Apart from the lending activities already described, Figure also has ventures in payments and crypto. It recently unveiled Figure Markets and is live with a crypto lending product. It’s taking advantage of Figure Lending’s existing mortgage licenses to provide loans against crypto holdings. Figure Markets recently raised funding, and Figure Technology Services has filed with the SEC to list on the stock market.