Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Brokers still working, despite new LO Comp rules

As the broker trade groups pull back from their legal action against the government to stall its plans to change loan officer compensation, many feared that the days of the mortgage loan broker would be over. At least one wholesale lender says that's not going to happen.

Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation, Sun Prairie, Wisc., reported this week that it has nearly quadrupled its wholesale lending production and its number of broker clients in the first quarter of 2011, only six months after entering the wholesale channel. While the new LO compensation rules didn't go into effect until the first of April, the company gave no indication that it expected to see its growth slow down in the months ahead.

Since launching the wholesale division last year, the company’s wholesale loan pipeline grew just over 300 percent between January 1st, 2011 and April 1st, 2011, while the number of its approved broker clients increased to approximately 160 approved third party originators. Fairway Wholesale Lending forecasts closing $60 million in wholesale loans in the second quarter of 2011. Its wholesale sales staff now covers six regions and the company is licensed to conduct business in 42 states, with centralized wholesale operations in Naperville, Illinois.

Fairway Wholesale Lending provides agency, conventional, FHA, VA, and just recently, USDA loans, as well as a full suite of fulfillment services for financial services companies that want to grow their mortgage lending operations but may lack the capital, resources or infrastructure to do so.

“We felt strongly that brokers and smaller correspondents could use our help, particularly after some of the nation’s largest banks began dropping their wholesale operations,” said Fairway Wholesale Lending Vice President, Divisional Sales Manager Howard Hoyt. “Our goals were modest, but we excelled by sticking to what we know: FHA, agency and USDA lending. We have also benefited greatly from the collective wholesale experience of our senior managers, which tops 250 years experience. We remain optimistic about the wholesale channel as the economy and housing markets begin to improve.”

Hoyt added that Fairway Wholesale Lending has taken a very “hands on” approach to wholesale lending that is distinguishable in several ways. First, the company is dedicated to approving as many loans as possible by working closely with clients who may need help with deal structuring. Second, it provides certified FHA loan training to all approved and prospective business partners. And third, it has created ways for clients to reach out for assistance, either by phone, email, or through a support website at All requests for assistance made through the website are routed directly to a subject matter expert who can provide immediate help.

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