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American Home Upgraded

Fitch upgrades primary servicer ratings

October 24, 2006

By MortgageDaily.com staff

American Home Mortgage Servicing Inc. improved its servicing.

Fitch Rating said it upgraded American Home's residential primary servicer ratings for prime, Alt-A, home equity loan and line of credit products to RPS3+ from RPS3. On a scale of 1 to 5, a 1 is the highest rating, and Fitch further differentiates ratings by plus and minus symbols, as well as the flat rating.

An experienced management team, effective loan administration processes, capable default management practices, as well as reliable training programs and continued commitment to technological enhancements were cited as the basis for the upgrade.

The servicing arm of American Home Mortgage Investment Corp. has offices in Irving, Texas, and had a $43.5 billion servicing portfolio of nearly 208,000 loans as of June 30. Prime nonconforming loan volume represented 73 percent of the portfolio, Alt-A added 17 percent, Federal Housing Adminstration/Veterans Affairs loans made up 5 percent and the rest consisted of home equity products. The servicer projects the portfolio will grow by about 30 percent from 2005 to between $50 billion and $55 billion this year.

To support its portfolio growth, American Home increased servicing staff to 254 employees, a 35 percent upturn since the prior review, Fitch said. During the year, the servicer created a new training center and developed an initial three-week servicing internship program for all new hires, improved technology within its loan administration areas, deployed document imaging, implemented call optimization software and call recording, and enhanced software for better investor reporting capabilities.

Fitch said American Home has the requisites necessary to manage its projected growth but that it will continue to monitor the company's effectiveness in maintaining consistent performance in the pursuit of its growth initiatives.

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