Fitch Gives Stable Rating to Reverse Mortgage Servicer Deval

With a strong workforce and a servicing platform poised for continued growth ahead, reverse mortgage servicer Deval, LLC, has earned a rating of “stable” from Fitch Ratings. 

The servicer provides a variety of financial services to public, private and institutional commercial clients with loan servicing and advisory services in real estate, finance and management consulting. The company operates a headquarters in Dallas, Texas, and maintains offices in the Washington, D.C. metro area, Palm Coast, Florida and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

“The initial rating is based on Deval’s evidenced abilities in servicing Federal Housing Administration’s Home Equity Conversion Mortgage products, its effective senior management team, adequate systems, controls and processes,” wrote Fitch in a statement. 

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Established as a limited liability company in 2002, Deval began its foray into reverse mortgage servicing in March 2012. The company notes that it is currently under contract with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for a multi-year, annual renewable contract. 

Deval is responsible for the full servicing of reverse mortgage loans, from the initial set-up through the pay-off. As of May 31, 2014, the company is servicing 19,077 HECM loans totaling $3.9 billion.

“While it has a limited history servicing reverse mortgage loans, Deval has a proven track record of effectively managing third party servicing transactions and has experience in providing component servicing and/or other mortgage servicing support through its platform,” Fitch stated. “The servicer is in the process of expanding its operation and will be increasing its traditional mortgage servicing functions.”

From its Dallas, Texas location, Deval maintains a staff of 72 full-time employees to manage the company’s HUD-dedicated functions, which include reverse mortgage servicing responsibilities as well as monitoring 630,000 FHA-endorsed HECM loans for over 115 lenders nationwide.

Fitch also observed that Deval has “strong” functional and group managers and is adequately staffed for its size and the type of portfolio being serviced. 

“Fitch believes that Deval’s recruiting, staffing, and training programs adequately support its reverse mortgage servicing operations,” Fitch stated. “While the company has limited financial strength it has adequate capital for the size of its current operation. Fitch will continue to monitor Deval’s expansion and its success in growing its reverse mortgage relationships and its traditional mortgage operations.”

Written by Jason Oliva

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