Hippo’s Mortgage Partner Channel Takes Off; Helps Find Coverage Faster

Program piloted last year now provides services to more than a dozen mortgage lenders and loan servicers, who help 7 million people finance or refinance their homes each year.

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Hippo Insurance Services has expanded a mortgage partner channel it piloted last year, and is now providing homeowners insurance policies through more than a dozen mortgage lenders and loan servicers, who help 7 million people finance or refinance their homes each year.

Because homes serve as collateral for mortgages, lenders require proof of homeowners insurance before they’ll approve a purchase loan or refinance an existing home loan. Hippo said it uses verified data sources so that applicants don’t have to answer dozens of questions, enabling them to receive tailored, “purchase-ready” homeowners insurance quotes from affiliated and unaffiliated insurance companies, in seconds.

Palo Alto, California-based Hippo has built a portfolio of customized application programming interfaces (APIs) for use by partners including mortgage originators and servicers, title companies and Realtors. Through its partnerships, Hippo said it can automatically provide electronic proof of insurance to mortgage lenders, to save customers potential headaches at closing.

“Since launching our mortgage partner channel as a pilot over a year ago, we have collaborated with an ever-growing list of leading lenders and servicing companies,” said Hippo CEO and President Rick McCathron, in a statement. “Together we can deliver a seamless home insurance purchase experience that alleviates some of the stress felt by homebuyers, and helps existing homeowners find better coverage faster.”

Rick McCathron

McCathron, who took the CEO reins from Hippo founder Assaf Wand earlier this month, said the company expects the mortgage partner channel to become “one of our key pillars for growth, as consumers look more and more to digital avenues to address their home ownership needs.”

In announcing the expansion of the mortgage partner channel Wednesday, Hippo said its products are now available to 94 percent of U.S. residents in 40 states, with the recent addition of Massachusetts.

Parent company Hippo Holdings Inc., which went public and raised more than $550 million in an Aug. 2 SPAC merger with Reinvent Technology Partners Z (RTPZ), also operates subsidiaries Hippo Home Care, First Connect Insurance Services, Spinnaker Insurance Co., Spinnaker Specialty Insurance Co. and Mainsail Insurance Co. Hippo Insurance Services is a licensed property casualty insurance agent, with products underwritten by affiliated and unaffiliated insurance companies.

Last summer, Hippo Insurance Services launched an “Inspection Protection” insurance product that homeowners can use to cover up to $100,000 in unanticipated structural repairs to features, such as roofs, fireplaces and foundations.

Before it went public last summer, Japanese insurance behemoth Mitsui Sumitomo helped fund Hippo’s growth.

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