1st Reverse Mortgage USA Builds on H4P Growth Plan

While many lenders have tried to tap into the reverse mortgage “sleeping giant,” a select few have actually succeeded in a calculated effort to grow HECM for Purchase business. 

Cherry Creek Mortgage’s reverse mortgage division, 1st Reverse Mortgage USA, is one of those lenders. The Lakewood, Colorado-based company now generates about 20% of its Home Equity Conversion Mortgage volume from H4P transactions, attributing its success to well-established relationships with home builders and real estate professionals in select areas of the U.S. 

Now, the company is making an even greater push to grow its H4P business with a concerted effort led by Tim Harder, vice president of business development, who will expand his role to serve as the sales team manager responsible for expanding relationships with homebuilders and developers.


“Our experience is with existing relationships, and we now are taking that expertise and casting a wider net and reaching out to more builders—especially as builders look to develop more and more 55-and-older communities,” Harder tells RMD. “Right now, one out of four homebuyers are 62 and older. By the year 2030, 20% of our population in America will be over 65.”

Based on its efforts in the H4P market, Harder anticipates that within five to eight years, the product may comprise as much as 35% to 40% of 1st Reverse Mortgage USA’s business. In his broadened role, he will be hiring a team to manage builder relationships, starting in the Rocky Mountain region and expanding organically in the future. 

The company has seen continued interest among builders who have successfully sold new homes through the H4P program —including referrals from builder to builder — who not only view the program as a means to sell homes, but also to sell upgraded “dream homes” to some families and individuals who may not have had the means to buy new homes in the past. 

“We are finding for a lot of seniors, this is their final chance to buy their dream home,” Harder says. “Over the years, due to life circumstances, they haven’t been able to upgrade or right-size, but this is their chance. For the builder, it’s a chance to sell upgraded homes and furnishings. It’s also a chance for the real estate agents to open up more homes to sell.” 

1st Reverse Mortgage USA recently expanded into the forward loan business under its “1st Mortgage” brand, as an addition to the operations of its parent company, Cherry Creek — an existing player in the forward space. The 1st Mortgage Solutions USA entity will share resources directly with 1st Reverse Mortgage USA. 

Written by Elizabeth Ecker

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  • The one thing you can say about H4P is that it is growing faster than the rest of the HECM products (or so many H4P propagandists would have us believe). The six month endorsement total for fiscal years 2015 and 2016 were exactly the same total at 1,196. So far this fiscal year after 6 months, total endorsements are 1,238. Now let us hear from our friendly propagandists who are jumping up on their soap boxes declaring how H4P is in a growing phase as never before.

    Yet total H4Ps for fiscal 2015 were 2,436 and for fiscal 2016, they were just 2,346. Now imagine the propagandists running towards their soap boxes and now telling us that the reason is that like all HECMs financial assessment was at play. Yet last year these same propagandists were telling us that financial assessment would have little impact on their endorsement numbers. Perhaps that is because there are so few of them to begin with.

    Will we ever see H4P actually grow to be at least 10,000 annually? As of today, there is not one fiscal year where the total H4P endorsements have reached 2,500 endorsments. There is no need to cast it aside but why waste so much space and time on it?

    We have heard a lot of claims about what percentage of endorsements would be at an industry level and then again at major company levels. In the first five months of this calendar year, Cherry Creek is not doing as well as last.

    It is great to hear about wonderful future success with H4P but the story sounds all too familiar. Other than RFS who will have it next year?

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