National Federal Housing Administration approved mortgage lender Residential Home Funding Corp. announced it is launching a reverse mortgage division and plans to enter the wholesale area as well later this year.
The White Plains, N.Y.-based lender operates more than 40 branches and has 350 employees. The new division will be led by Senior Vice Presidents Mario Martirano and Alex Farber. The acquisition of Farber and Martirano, both formerly of Agency for Consumer Equity Mortgages Inc., will allow Residential Home Funding Corp. to expand its product offering in the 21 states in which it is licensed and target an expansion plan to be licensed in 30 states by year’s end.
“The opportunity to grow out our business and help the senior community with a dedicated reverse mortgage division with an experience and knowledgeable team with a real sense of social responsibility to the senior demographic allows Residential to continue on its growth path as an industry leader that cares,” said Chief Operating Officer David Stein.
“We had some tough decisions to make in light of the regulatory and compensation issues facing the broker community,” Martirano said. “In the past we had resisted solicitations from other groups because we felt it so imperative to maintain our identity and core philosophy, which is to always offer the best product to the consumer. I knew from my old bank days, the abundance of bureaucracy, overemphasis on metrics and quotas that our model would not be able to survive at larger institutions. As well as having access only to their product, be it the best for consumer or not.”
The new division will be launched as Consumer Equity Reverse Mortgages a Division of RHF in the near term as licensing and name changes are acknowledged by states and regulatory agencies. The division also plans on expanding into the wholesale business by April/May, allowing it to work with more than 100 wholesale correspondent partners who already broker loans through its parent company on the forward side.
Residential/Consumer Equity will also be looking into providing opportunities for smaller brokers to join the company. “Being brokers ourselves, gives us a tremendous insight and advantage in helping other companies make the transition to banker,” said Martirano.
Written by Elizabeth Ecker