LenderNews by Rob Chrisman
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Mar. 20: LO & AE jobs, business opportunities; title co. M&A; state changes impacting lenders & banks

March 20, 2018

The first day of Spring! Converting empty warehouses, grain elevators, under-utilized shopping malls, or Toys-R-Us stores to new housing? Perhaps. There is certainly a lack of buildable land in many areas and builders, recognizing that lots of people want to own their own home, are utilizing land as much as possible. How much cleverness can you put into a “tiny home,” agency approved if there are comps? It turns out, quite a bit. Am I missing the point if I wonder where I would put all my stuff?
 
Jobs
 
Angel Oak Mortgage Solutions is pleased to announce the opening of its new operations center in Las Colinas in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. The new facility will replicate the functions of Angel Oak’s headquarters in Atlanta, GA. With its strong service-based culture, AOMS has hired Travis LaLonde, an industry veteran with 15 years of experience, to lead the operations center. To provide services to its clients as it grows throughout Texas and the West Coast, AOMS will be hiring up to 30 professionals in the next 90 days. Visit JoinAngelOak.com to learn more about a career with the leader in non-Agency lending.
 
A federally chartered Bank is looking to add Loan Officers to its retail division who are experienced, customer-driven originators in the Minnesota, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Florida, Maryland and Southern CA markets. “Home loans are no longer one-size-fits-all, which is why we present our loan originators with a boutique of product offerings suitable for nearly every borrower situation. As a direct seller to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae, we can provide a multitude of loan products from our one-time close Construction loan program to the variety of Jumbo loan options. Our operational team works to help LOs hit commitment and contingency dates. We back up our service level guarantee with money saving offers on most of our products. The bank is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. Expand your business by joining a boutique, fun team of lending experts and contact Rob Chrisman; please specify opportunity.”
 
A long-time mortgage industry veteran is interested in helping company owners raise capital or sell their business. “I am afraid that the tough market conditions today will persist or get worse. Many owners, especially for small and medium size companies, will continue burning through capital. In many cases there is a more efficient strategy for them. We use a very focused approach by finding what the owners really want to accomplish and then contacting a small number of potential partners for them. The market value of just about everybody’s company is declining and it may be a good time for a strategic alliance.” If you would like to find out more email me to forward your note; please specify opportunity.
 
Caliber Home Loans, Inc. and its National Builder Division recently achieved another top 10 ranking among lenders for home builder production in 2017, according to housing market intelligence firm Metrostudy. Caliber has proudly risen thru the ranks of national lenders in the competitive home building industry from 33rd in 2014 to 14th in 2015 and now to 8th based on 2017 volume. Caliber ensures that builders’ homebuyers are provided with the ideal loan product – one that complements their financial situation and personal preferences. One example is the recently introduced Builder’s Choice Extended Lock. Builder-focused loan officers should contact Jeremy DeRosa or Michael Brown to learn about career opportunities at Caliber.
 
Brad Hoke has joined Pacific Union Financial as Chief Human Resources Officer. With over 20 years of experience in financial services, Brad brings a wealth of HR knowledge with specific focus on recruiting and employee experience. With continued growth in 2018, Brad will be instrumental in providing an experience that allows Pacific Union employees to maximize their success. Are you a salesperson looking to join a winning team? If so, contact Pacific Union today for more details.  
 
PrimeLending opens its newest branch in Fayetteville, N.C., home to the largest U.S. Army installation at Fort Bragg. With Fayetteville serving as a top place to live for active and retired military, Branch Manager JR Williams made operating under a new lender with military-friendly products a top priority. That’s why PrimeLending was a no-brainer decision for JR and team —PrimeLending’s Home Loans for Heroes program offered VA No Lender Fee and VA Renovation Loan options that truly rose above the competition. Now equipped with an additional 400+ home loan products, first-class processes, personal support and 5-star customer service track record, the Fayetteville branch has become a leading lender for not only heroes, but for all local home buyers. If you’re a top-tier LO looking for the products, processes and support to be all you can be in your hometown, contact Dudley Strawn (469.737.5743) today.
 
Products
 
“We love our brokers, so we’ve updated our Lock Policy to better serve them. Stearns Wholesale has lowered their extension costs to just 1.5 bps per day — much cheaper than a 6 bps per day extension! What else has changed? For starters, our hours: 6:30AM PT to 11:59 PM PT. The market doesn’t sleep, why should we? If you’re up late worrying about expirations, rest easy. We’ve lowered our relock charges to a worse case pricing + .125 bps and we will give you your original lock term back. Today’s market is volatile, but we’ve got your back. Use current market pricing up to 30 days after lock expiration. But why wait when you can extend it free? Just ask for a FREE 7-Day extension when you lock the first time. We know you have a choice in lenders, and we like you. Let’s lock this down!”
 
Originally released exclusively to Rob Chrisman subscribers a few weeks ago, “3 Steps to Profitable Growth” outlines key focus areas for lending managers to drive profitability in a challenging purchase heavy market. The mortgage industry continues its dramatic shift into a purchase-heavy market and along with it, a decline in profitability for many lenders across the nation. Toward the end of 2017 lenders were averaging around 42 bps of profitability with Q1 of 2017 reaching a low of only 10 bps. To put this in perspective, in Q3 2012 the industry averaged 119+ bps! These numbers should not be surprising, but it doesn’t mean you cannot achieve greater profitability by focusing on the right elements and metrics of your business. A must read for all mortgage managers: Download your free copy here!
 
M&A
 
Mergers and acquisitions are not confined to banks and lenders. Yesterday morning word broke about Stewart Information Services (STC) will be acquired by Fidelity National Financial (FNF) for $50.20/share, a +23% premium, in a $1.2 billion deal. If it goes through, the deal brings two of the Big Four title insurers together. Assuming shareholder approvals, this deal is expected to close in 1Q-2Q 2019 which likely factors in a lengthy regulatory review process and would mark the end of a long and winding road for STC. I don’t follow these things that closely, but KBW reports that “many in the industry looked at FNF as a third or maybe even fourth option for a STC takeout amidst STC’s ongoing strategic review…we think this could end up being a milestone-type acquisition for FNF.”
 
State news
 
It is expensive to be a multi-state lender, and potentially doing business in different ways and using different policies in various states. And different states have different demographics. Last year IL was the state where the most residents moved out, followed by NJ, NY, CT and KS. Meanwhile, the states seeing the biggest inbound activity were VT, OR, ID, NV and SD.
 
From Texas, Tom Black sent, “The Finance Commission and the Credit Union Commission have both adopted final rules with respect to the recent constitutional amendments dealing with Texas cash-out loans. The final rule represents some significant wins for both lenders and consumers.
 
Recall that in Washington last summer, a Seattle law was approved that restricts landlords from checking the criminal history of potential tenants.
 
In California, is the high price of housing in the Bay Area bringing back the 19th century concept of the company town? Google has been buying apartments for temporary housing for its employees. Interesting issue, where builders won’t take the risk on building new housing, but companies need the housing for their employees. 
 
As goes California, so goes the nation? California is mulling over state-owned bank for the cannabis industry. As one might expect, legal uncertainty limits financial options for suppliers and retailers.
 
New Jersey is also considering a state-owned bank to “provide transportation project loans, student loans, small business loans, and be able to purchase mortgages from commercial banks. The bank would also be able to purchase, lease and construct buildings, and would even have the power of eminent domain. And it would be able to buy and sell federal funds.”
 
Pennsylvania’s Department of Banking and Securities has effectively incorporated the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s mortgage servicer regulations as required by Act 81 of 2017. The regulations can be viewed here. The Department will begin accepting applications to be licensed as a mortgage servicer through the NMLS on April 1, 2018. Anyone engaging in the mortgage servicing business in Pennsylvania without applying for a license by June 30, 2018, will be considered unlicensed and subject to enforcement action. This information can also be viewed on The Department of Banking and Securities’ page under the “Did You Know?” section.
 
 
The New York Department of Financial Services released a memorandum, published by the MBA, indicating that the Department will be enhancing its supervisory oversight and examination process of regulated financial institutions by adding a number of specific questions relating to cyber security to its first day letters. These will be issued by the Department in connection with its examinations starting this month. The memorandum goes on to say that the Department’s intent is to assist companies in identifying and managing risks by adopting measures to protect them consistent with its 2017 cybersecurity regulation.
 
The commonwealth of Virginia amended its provisions relating to foreclosure that include notice of sale requirements when the owner is deceased. These provisions are effective on July 1, 2018. The amendment provides requirements of the notice as it pertains to all the parties to receive the notice at the last known address per records recorded with the circuit court where the property is located. Additionally, the amendment describes the process to ensue whenever the grantor or his successor in title dies prior to a trustee’s sale held pursuant to the deed of trust and the deed of trust contains no definite provision for the distribution of any surplus in the event of the death of the grantor or his successors.
 
The state of Nebraska modified its provisions relating to consumer protection under its Financial Data Protection and Consumer Notification of Data Security Breach Act of 2006 (“FDP”). These provisions are effective on July 17, 2018. The amendment prohibits certain fees under the Credit Report Protection Act; changes provisions relating to the FDP; requires additional reasonable security procedures and practices regarding personal information; provides applicability for certain provisions; harmonizes provisions; and repeals the original sections.
 
Regarding the MFA’s single-family program, New Mexico Lenders Association posted: Participating lenders may charge an Origination Fee, to the borrower, of no more than 0.500% on applications dated March 1, 2018 and thereafter.  No discount fee may be charged. New program policies will be available on the MFA website by March 1, 2018. MFA also requests that participating lenders inform the appropriate staff within their organization of the upcoming changes. Contact MFA’s Homeownership Department with any questions or for further clarification.   
 
Capital markets
 
If only markets could hold their breath before the FOMC meeting. Treasuries prices were up Monday, stocks fell across the board, mostly in technology as it was revealed 50 million Facebook users had their data harvested sans consent. On the demand side of the equation the NY Fed provided some late session support, just ahead of the settlement close, when they purchased $798 million of 30YR conventional 4% ($505 million) and 4.5% ($193 million). More today!
 
Today sees another light economic calendar. The Philadelphia Fed Nonmanufacturing Surveys for March has been released, the Redbook Same-Store Sales Index will be released, and the Treasury will auction $65 billion 1-month T-bills at 11:30am ET. Finally, at 1:00pm, day one of the two-day FOMC meeting will kick off – look for an increase tomorrow. The 10-year is currently yielding 2.88% and agency MBS prices are worse .125 versus Monday’s close.
 
 
It was John’s turn to drive carpool into town on a day when a new member was traveling along for the first time. As they rode along he began to be suspicious of his new carpooling passenger.
John checked to see if his wallet was safe in the pocket of his coat that was on the seat between them, but it wasn’t there. He immediately slammed on the brakes, ordered the fellow out, and said, "Hand over the wallet!"
The frightened carpooler handed over a billfold, before John drove off, leaving him alone at the side of the road. When he arrived home that evening, he started to tell his wife about the experience.
Just as he started to recount the whole story, she interrupted him, saying, "Oh, that reminds me, John. Do you know that you left your wallet at home this morning?"
 
 
Visit www.robchrisman.com for more information on our industry partners, access archived commentaries, or to subscribe to the Daily Mortgage News and Commentary. If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “Servicing: All It’s Cracked Up to Be?” If you have both the time and inclination, make a comment on what I have written, or on other comments so that folks can learn what’s going on out there from the other readers.
Rob
 
(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. Currently there are over 300 mortgage professionals looking for operations, secondary and management roles. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to www.robchrisman.com. Copyright 2018 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)