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Why I Work With Snowflakes

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By Erin Lestitian

I remember my parents telling me that no two snowflakes are alike. I found it fascinating that something in our world does not have a duplicate. The same can be said for HUDS. Although the same process is done to complete every file, the steps to get there differ sometimes a little and sometimes a lot.

People have asked me how I can do my job day in and day out. To me, that question is a little puzzling, as to me, doing my job is both challenging and exciting at the same time. I have been told being in the HUD department is boring. This is certainly not my opinion. In fact, while on an interview, I was presented with the opportunity to choose anywhere in a company where I would like to work. My response to the manager of the Closing Department was easy. I desired to work on HUDS. His response could only be classified as shock as he told me to hold on a minute. He left the room and came back with the person who would be my direct supervisor. He told her I wanted to do HUDS and she just grinned. Neither of them thought that anyone would volunteer for the job, again, due to the fact that it had a singular purpose which was to complete HUD settlement statements for closings. I would say that was the end result of my job description but that statement is not correct. The ending of work on a file is to get the loan, purchase, and refinance closed, and that is one of the many aspects that keeps me coming back to the HUD team time and time again.

That is only one example of how others have perceived the job that I have done the majority of my adult life. There have been many more that I could recount. Instead of walking down memory lane, I would rather like to explain many parts of my job that, when combined, make being a HUD preparer the most exciting job for me.

When I am assigned a file, I have no idea the type of journey that I am about to embark on. Each has its only individuality even before I start the process. To begin with, each state has its own rules. I start with the simplest one: am I even allowed to complete the HUD? There are some states where you must be an attorney in order to prepare the HUD. Once determined if I am doing the HUD, then my preparations begin. What type of file has been assigned to me? The form is identical for each and every file and the things that change are the information that I have to add to it or subtract from it. Then I have to make sure that my information is up to date. The effective date of my title must be current, taxes and utilities must up to date, and I have to make sure that all of my information is saved to the file so that I can continue. If any of the information I require is outdated, then I have to contact the correct person to make sure the file is clear.

It does take a fair amount of research for me to start entering data. Once I begin to create the HUD, I have to utilize a majority of programs in order to be successful. I have to know how to calculate title insurance premiums, endorsement charges, and recording fees. Anyone who thinks or believes that a HUD can be done in five minutes has added to the misconceptions of my job. I have people that I need to make happy and my job determines whether or not that happens. If the seller gets too little money because I neglected to calculate a fee correctly or we had to refund a borrower because I charged them too much, then I have made a lot of people unhappy. Trust me, if I make it difficult for the funding and recording team to close out a file because of my errors, I am sure they will tell me about it. Once I have completed the HUD, then I need to make sure that all parties involved are able to review the document and I have to get it to closing along with any explanation on what the buyer and the seller need to do to be successful. This includes how the buyer is able to pay for any shortage, which is different in every state as well as when they are able to release keys to the buyer and our seller can officially say that the property is out of their inventory.

A paper pusher who does the same job day in and day out? That is so not who and what I am. What I am is a lucky girl that gets to work with snowflakes, or in other words, a different file each and every time. Who could complain about that? Not me!!

About Author: Erin Lestitian

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Erin Kelly Lestitian joined the team at SingleSource Property Solutions LLC in 2014 where she continues her 19th year in the title insurance industry. She holds to the quote her father told her as a child: “If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life!”
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