By John Flynn, Open Lending CEO & Chairman
While times remain uncertain, credit unions continue to seek new ways to mitigate risk. According to USA Today, unemployment in the U.S. is still above 833,000, and many of those are still waiting for unemployment payments under the CARES Act. Credit unions have deferred payments for members, but for how long can they continue while mitigating risk and maintaining growth?
Earlier this year, we took steps to adjust our underwriting requirements, and we encourage all credit unions to do the same. While some consumers may have a more difficult time getting auto loans than in the past, we all must mitigate risk so our organizations can weather the economic downturn and come out stronger on the other side for all of our stakeholders.
We understand that many credit unions are working to help their members, while also growing your auto loan portfolios. Open Lending reviews our proprietary data, collected for more than a decade, and study other factors on loans as well, such as loan-to-value, payment-to-income and other data. We came out of the 2008-09 housing crisis strong, and more than 95% of our credit union partners were still able to meet their revenue targets. Strategic risk management changes will not destroy your auto lending.
We understand that these are trying times for both consumers and our lender-partners. We are working to do everything we can to help both parties. Sometimes this means adding requirements to consumers in more challenged situations, such as requiring Proof of Income, and validating other data.
Please continue to work with your borrowers, underwriters and insurance companies as we do to help protect your business. Lenders must be doubly careful to ensure we’re making the right loans and maintaining the proper protections for your long-term business success.