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Mortgage Branch News | Net Branch | Mortgage Branch Directory
Coverage of new and existing net branch operations. Programs, payouts and other details. Profiles of brokers and net branch lawsuits.


The Mortgage Branch Pulse

Recent mortgage branching activity

June 25, 2010

By SAM GARCIA


A newly launched branch program promises mortgage brokers the opportunity to operate as mortgage bankers and keep 100 percent of loan profits without any net worth requirements. Another company claims its program will still let originators earn overages despite potential new legislation prohibiting such fees for mortgage brokers. Meanwhile, a host of other firms announced new branches.

GSF Funding recently reported that its branch business model will enable originators to continue to be paid through a rate upsell despite the passage of the Restoring American Financial Stability Act on May 20 by the U.S. Senate. The bill still needs to be reconciled with the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2009.

According to Brookfield, Wis.-based GSF, overage pricing requires that there is no up-front payment of discount points, origination points or similar fees except for third-party settlement charges.

The 15-year-old company said originators can also receive compensation when a closed loan is sold to a subsequent purchaser and when they meet a volume threshold for a specific time period.

Another firm with headquarters in Wisconsin, Inlanta Mortgage, announced in April that it obtained its Kansas license.

More recently, Inlanta reported that its new Accounting for Mortgage Bankers system from Advantage Systems Inc. includes loan-level detail -- enabling company executives and branch managers to see live reports that reflect profitability by originator, loan type and branch.

Inlanta, a MortgageDaily.com advertiser, announced yesterday that it hired Indar Ramadhar as funding manager. The 20-year mortgage veteran previously worked at Universal Mortgage Corp.

The NorthStar Branch Associates program was recently announced by NorthStar Alliance Inc. Under the program, mortgage brokers can operate as mortgage bankers without any net worth requirement. In addition, they can keep 100% of branch net profits and continue to broker loans to other wholesale lenders -- though the majority of originations will be funded in-house.

The NorthStar program is available in Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington.

"Unlike other branch programs, NorthStar isn't looking to have thousands of branches," said Jack Baker, a NorthStar district manager, in the statement. "We believe that the branch does the lion's share of the work and should receive the lion's share of the profit."

Nations Funding Source, which claims to be "the world's largest mortgage broker," said in a recent marketing message that its branches pay just a $600 flat fee for loans under $250,000 and 10 percent of total mortgage broker commissions on bigger loans. The company charges brokers $250 to sign up.

A 21 percent increase in revenue between the fourth-quarter 2008 and the fourth-quarter 2009 was reported by Prime Source Mortgage Inc. The Roswell, N.M.-based mortgage broker-banker attributed the increase to branch growth. Last year, 11 new branches were signed up.

A new Birmingham, Ala., office was launched by PrimeLending during April, according to a news release. Coralie Jackson was named branch manager.

In March, PrimeLending announced the opening of a Virginia Beach, Va., branch. The office is being run by Roger Garrett.

Derek Fertig was appointed branch manager of Gold Star Financial Mortgage Group's new office in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., an April announcement indicated. Fertig's prior gig was with Americas Mortgage Professionals.

Earlier this year, Fairway Independent Mortgage said it hired Kristy Schryver for its Denton, Texas, branch.

Mortgage Associates in Columbia, Md., has become part of Corridor Mortgage Group's branch in Marriottsville, Md., a May 26 statement said. Mortgage Associates was owned by Sara Lenes and had six loan originators.

In Oregon, Medford-based Mortgage Marketplace has joined Mortgage Express in Portland, Ore., Oregon Live LLC reported last month. Mortgage Marketplace founder Jim Palazzolo was quoted as saying that the seven-employee firm "needed to develop inroads for direct lending -- in-house banking lines. The other thing was the potential changes on the horizon involving qualifications to do FHA loans for an independent mortgage broker."

Oregon Live said that a month earlier, Cox, Beard, Hall & Associates LLC joined Portland-based Pacific Residential Mortgage.


Sam Garcia worked in mortgage lending for twenty years prior to becoming publisher of MortgageDaily.com in 2000.

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