Bringing mortgage lending into the digital age

When most people think of home mortgage loans, they don’t necessarily think of efficiency. And due to increasing government regulation, the time and expense to execute a mortgage has gone up by 80% over the last eight years.


As loan officers gather the various types of information and signatures that prospective homeowners must submit to be considered for a loan, a typical loan file can surpass 500 pages. HousingWire reports that the average loan now takes 49 days to complete.


John Paasonen and his partners at Maxwell Financial Labs were dismayed to learn how red-tape-laden this process was when they bought their own homes. They envisioned a better way — one that would streamline the loan experience for mortgage loan officers and their customers. 


As Paasonen recalls, the vision was of a process “free from paper, free from old technologies like email and fax machines — a centralized hub where all of the stakeholders in the mortgage can come together to collaborate and move through the process.” To create a cloud-based application that would enable such an experience, they needed a secure and stable content platform.


“We started Maxwell because we as borrowers were frustrated with the process. Our purpose is to get loan officers and mortgage professionals free.” 

— John Paasonen, CEO and Co-founder, Maxwell Financial Labs

Bringing mortgage lending into the digital age

Refocusing mortgage lenders on people, not paper

The mortgage industry is highly federally regulated. Laws are strict, sensitive personal information is at stake, and financial institutions gather an overabundance of information at every turn rather than risk missing one single piece of data.


Obviously, to challenge the status quo of a stalwart financial industry’s methods, Maxwell’s founders needed a technology platform that would keep content secure with airtight permissions and allow for e-signatures. And it needed to be entirely user friendly, or there would be no point at all. When Maxwell teamed up with Box, certifications like ISO 27001, FINRA, SOC 1, SOC 2 Type II and SOC 3 compliance were already in place.


“That’s helped us get to market faster a well as meet the regulatory requirements,” says Maxwell co-founder Rutul Davè. “And the more content we add, the platform automatically scales to meet that requirement.”

Maxwell’s application now integrates with thousands of financial institutions to electronically capture the documents that borrowers supply to loan officers — documents like W-2s, paystubs, bank statements and tax returns. Box automates the workflows between loan officers, homebuyers and real estate professionals, keeping the focus on the people, not the paperwork.


"Box provided the platform that allowed us to store and transfer content securely and give permissions to the right people to access that content,” Paasonen says.


Ease of use built on bulletproof security

The ability to customize the interface while building on Box gave Maxwell’s application a UI very specific to the needs of the industry and its stakeholders.


“As we were building Maxwell,” says co-founder Rutul Dave, “We let Box Platform take care of the storage, redundancy and permissions for all the content. That way, we could focus resources on the application and user experience rather than the content layer.”

Ease of use built on bulletproof security

The strong permission model built into Box means only the lending team and homebuyer have access to the documents. Through a secure web interface, users can index and preview content right within the application without any risky downloads.


“We want to built technology that empowers loan officers to do what they’re really good at, which is advising and coaching borrowers, and remove them from things that software’s really good at, like managing workflows and collaboration.” ­

— John Paasonen, CEO and Co-founder, Maxwell Financial Labs


How Maxwell delights its customers

One of Maxwell’s first customers, John Barry, a Mortgage Loan Officer at Houz Mortgage, remarks: “It was very easy to use, and very easy to request documents from our borrowers. We were able to really integrate it into our experience.”

How Maxwell delights its customers

So far, Maxwell has used Box Platform to power collaboration for over $2 billion in loan transactions. It's closing loans 45% faster than the national average. And for users like John Barry, it has increased loan-officer efficiency by a good two-thirds.


“We’re actually pulling in other loan officers,” Barry says. “Because clients are so impressed.”


And on that note, Maxwell will continue to build on Box to bring a highly regulated traditional industry firmly into the 21st century while getting back to old-school values of personalized customer service.