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Best Mortgage Employers

Quicken highest ranking mortgage firm

Jan. 22, 2012

By staff

Only a few mortgage-related firms were among the highest-ranking employers in an annual review of the best places to work in America.

At the top of FORTUNE's 2012 100 Best Companies to Work For was Google.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based company's "Employees rave about their mission, the culture, and the famous perks of the Plex: bocce courts, a bowling alley, eyebrow shaping (for a fee) in the New York office," FORTUNE said. "Then there's the food: some 25 cafés companywide, all gratis."

No. 10 on the ranking -- and the highest-ranking mortgage-related company -- was Quicken Loans Inc.

Employees at the Detroit-based lender "take immense pride in its move from the suburbs to downtown Detroit," FORTUNE wrote. The move has occurred during the past 18 months for 3,700 team members.

Quicken reported a record $30 billion in residential originations last year.

In its own statement, Quicken highlighted how it has made the ranking of the top-30 companies for the past nine years.

Quicken Loans Founder and Chairman Dan Gilbert noted in the statement that the company's "outstanding, hardworking, passionate people" combined with the right culture is a formula for success.

"Quicken Loans team members work in an environment designed to encourage collaborative, creative thinking," the company said of its offices. "Video games, ping pong tables and scooters are available for play, and new technology is developed in open gathering spaces complete with dry-erase walls, bean bag chairs, free slushies and popcorn, and much more."

Quicken's former parent company, Intuit, was ranked 19th on the list of best employers.

No. 33 on the list was Goldman Sachs -- which unloaded its Litton Mortgage unit in September 2011 to Ocwen Financial Corp.

The next mortgage-related firm to make the list was No. 69 Umpqua Bank.

A "quirky culture" at Umpqua was noted by the magazine. The "fast-expanding regional bank" has morning huddles, in-office games and 40 hours of paid time off per year to volunteer.

Portland, Ore.-based Umpqua Bank acquired $480 million Nevada Security Bank when it failed in June 2010, while $670 million Rainier Pacific Bank was acquired by Umpqua when it failed in February 2010 as was $489 million Evergreen Bank a month earlier. In January 2009, Umpqua Bank picked up the failed Bank of Clark County, which had $447 million in assets.

Umpqua Holdings Corp. reported second-quarter 2010 residential loan production of $145 million, less than $234 million in the year-earlier quarter.

No. 95 on FORTUNE's list -- and the only other mortgage-related company on the list -- was Navy Federal Credit Union.

"Employees of the world's largest credit union cite no layoffs in its 79-year history and benefits equal to or better than those offered by commercial banks," the ranking said.

Back in November, the Vienna, Va.-based financial institution projected more than $5 billion in full-year 2011 originations. Production was $5.4 billion in 2010.

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