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Accredited Parent Acquires $9.3 Billion in Loans

CIT selling assets, servicing to Lone Star

July 1, 2008

By MortgageDaily.com staff


The parent of Accredited Home Lenders Inc. and the world's richest man are diving deeper into non-conforming mortgage lending.

Lone Star Funds has agreed to acquire $9.3 billion in home lending assets and related servicing operations from CIT Group Inc., CIT announced today.

Lone Star will reportedly pay $1.5 billion in cash and assume $4.4 billion in outstanding debt and other related liabilities.

The deal includes servicing centers in Marlton, N.J., and Oklahoma City. Approximately 300 people are employed at the two servicing centers.

Lone Star is the parent of LSF5 Accredited Investments LLC, which in turn is the parent of Accredited Home Lenders Inc. and Accredited Home Lenders Holding Co.

Last month, Accredited -- one of the few remaining subprime lenders -- restructured its operations. That move resulted in the closing of operations centers in Orange, Calif.; Beaverton, Ore.; St. Petersburg, Fla.; and Woodcliff Lake, N.J.

Two days later, the San Diego company announced former Bear Stearns Residential Mortgage Corp. chief executive officer Jeff Walton would take over as CEO of Accredited.

CIT reported in August 2007 it would exit its home lending origination operations, resulting in 550 layoffs at 25 U.S. offices.

Today's press release also indicated CIT agreed to sell its manufactured housing portfolio of approximately $470 million to Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance Inc.

Vanderbilt is a subsidiary of Clayton Homes Inc., which is owned by Berkshire Hathaway -- the company run by legendary billionaire Warren Buffet. In March, Buffet was ranked the world's richest man by Forbes.

A year ago, CIT said its managed residential portfolio was $11.9 billion, with 6.60 percent of the loans delinquent at least 60 days.

While the sale of the portfolios are expected to net CIT $1.8 billion in cash, the New York-based company said it will record a second-quarter pre-tax loss of $2.5 billion for its home lending segment.

Both portfolio sales are expected to be completed this month, while the servicing platform sale is expected to close early next year.

"These sales complete our exit from all home lending businesses, removing the uncertainty surrounding this asset class, and advances our strategic transformation into a company focused entirely on commercial finance," CIT Chairman and CEO Jeffrey M. Peek said in the statement.

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