|Headcount is projected to rise as much as 40 percent this year at Residential Capital LLC's servicing unit. Positions in production are also being added.
ResCap started adding servicing jobs late last year as loss mitigation activity heated up, Jeannine Bruin, executive director of mortgage communications at parent GMAC Financial Services, told MortgageDaily.com in a telephone interview late Tuesday. When the Obama administration unveiled its Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan in February, incoming borrower phone calls jumped and the company expanded its hiring plans for servicing positions.
In all, servicing jobs are expected to increase by as much as 40 percent this year.
Record-low mortgage rates have fueled a surge in refinance activity, Bruin continued. Even originations for home purchases have heated up.
As a result of the improved business, ResCap is also hiring loan processors, closers and commissioned loan originators.
In all, Bruin said ResCap expects to add around 1,000 U.S. employees this year -- though that figure could vary depending on which direction interest rates head. (total new hirings, which were originally reported at 1,500, were revised based on subsequent GMAC statements), Yesterday, Freddie Mac projected the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will steadily rise from 4.9 percent this quarter to 5.5 percent by the middle of next year.
The latest hiring projection at ResCap is an increase from February, when the firm told MortgageDaily.com that it planned to hire around 700 new servicing employees this year.
As many as 150 of the hirings will occur at a servicing center in Fort Washington, Pa., where ResCap is holding a job fair tomorrow. That operation mostly handles bankruptcies and foreclosures.
The rest of the job additions will happen in Carlsbad, Calif.; Charlotte, N.C.; Dallas; and Waterloo, Iowa, according to the spokeswoman.
In Feb. 27 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, GMAC warned that deteriorating capital at ResCap could force the unit into bankruptcy. One possibility discussed for such a scenario was GMAC providing debtor-in-possession financing.
The recent increase in originations, however, could diminish the chances of a bankruptcy.