Keystone Property Finance is a specialist buy-to-let lender catering for standard and complex landlord mortgage requirements and will lend on properties up to £2m.
Set up in 2007, Keystone wanted to upgrade its mortgage servicing technology moving from a legacy system to state-of-the-art capability. Keystone required a cost-effective system which its own staff could use to service the loans from completion through to redemption.
This was a two-phase project starting with onboarding of new mortgage completions followed by migration of Keystones entire mortgage back book.
In the beginning
Keystone was aware of Phoebus reputation as a highly experienced mortgage service software provider, an expert in migration of accounts and its ability to facilitate securitisation of mortgage books. These three elements were critical in its decision to appoint Phoebus.
In March 2021, Phoebus started working on the onboarding of new mortgage completions onto its platform using the award-winning Phoebus originations and migrations API.
Delivered using agile delivery methodology, the first phase of the solution took two months to be delivered into user acceptance testing. The solution went live in May 2021 and functionality includes all Keystone’s servicing and securitisation requirements.
Phoebus provided Keystone staff with the training on how to use the system and is always on hand to deal with any queries while functionality is constantly being updated.
Back book migration
The Phoebus portal exceeded Keystone’s expectations and cemented its decision to migrate the lender’s entire back portfolio of c£275 million onto the same solution.
Utilising the migration functionality of the API, Keystone’s various tranches of loans were successfully onboarded onto the Phoebus servicing solution in just seven weeks. This is incredibly fast as migrations can often take months.
One of the biggest challenges with any migration is understanding the source data. In the initial phase there are gaps in the data, so algorithms are added in and workarounds put in place so action can be taken quickly.
Following all the data cleansing and robust testing, the migration itself took place over a weekend and was live for users to service the loans immediately the following working day.
Work started on the migration in mid-October and there was a 3rd December deadline, which was immoveable as Keystone had a securitisation planned for Q1 2023.
Another challenge for Keystone was that it has not undertaken a migration before, this was a first and staff did it themselves with help and guidance from Phoebus. The two firms worked closely as one team and because of this excellent collaboration the whole process was faster and easier than anyone could have imagined.
Phoebus staff were always available for Keystone and they used WhatsApp to keep in touch for much of the time. This proved invaluable over the migration weekend. Building on the good relationship that had been developed since the initial onboarding of new accounts earlier in the year, Keystone trusted Phoebus to deliver.
Results and benefits
By using the Phoebus capability, Keystone is now self-sufficient and in control of its own servicing in-house with back up from Phoebus whenever needed.
The platform is much more cost effective than the previous system as Keystone is not paying a third party to input data or generate reports, that is now done by its own staff.
The application is easy to use with greater functionality including automatically generating customer letters, annual mortgage statements and redemption statements and updating transactions. It can create management information reports and crucially is capable of facilitating securitisations.
There is also the potential to migrate other books onto the Phoebus platform in the future should Keystone wish to do so.
“The Phoebus team did a sterling job, moving at pace to migrate the balance of our mortgage book onto the new platform. I’m not sure whether it was the fastest migration Phoebus has supported but given the initial timeline indications from others, we’re over the moon that it was measured in weeks rather than months.
“Our group IT director was very impressed by the Phoebus team’s proactivity and engagement throughout the dash to get the migration over the line – with great leadership and technical expertise throughout.”