UWM Backpedals On Crypto ‘Stunt’

Over the summer, United Wholesale Mortgage (UWM) created a “bang” in the marketplace with the news it would begin accepting cryptocurrency for mortgage payments. But now it appears the initiative may be reduced to a whimper. “We’ve evaluated the feasibility, and we’re looking forward to being the first mortgage company in America to accept cryptocurrency to satisfy mortgage payments,” CEO Mat Ishbia told investors in August. Among the currencies on the list: Bitcoin, Dogecoin and Ethereum. But just two months later, Ishbia announced that UWM has processed just six such mortgage payments thus far, and it will not be widely accepting the experimental currencies after all. “Due to the current combination of incremental costs and regulatory uncertainty in the Crypto…

Hutchens Hints At New Non-QM Tech

Angel Oak Mortgage Solutions is focusing on streamlining the process of closing non-qualifying mortgage (non-QM) loans so that it more closely resembles closing an agency loan. “It’s a priority for us,” Angel Oak executive vice president of production Tom Hutchens told the MPA. Angel Oak is reportedly investing in technologies to automate more of the non-QM underwriting process. Non-QM loans are still mostly manually underwritten, while agency lending is almost fully automated. “You think of Rocket Mortgage, where you ‘click a button, get a mortgage,’ and it has almost become the industry norm. It’s not quite that easy. It’s nice to at least make it look like it is,” he said. Non-QMs are sometimes associated with the financial crash of 2008,…

3,000 Mortgage Pros Attend AIME Conference

The Association of Independent Mortgage Experts (AIME) hosted its 4th annual Fuse National Conference, a conference for brokers and wholesale mortgage professionals. It is the largest nationwide gathering of independent mortgage professionals in the industry. The conference spanned three days, with a pre-event dedicated to empowering women leaders as part of AIME’s Women’s Mortgage Network Summit. The Women’s Mortgage Network Facebook group saw a 100% increase in membership since September 2020, so it’s not a surprise the event sold out its 400 tickets. AIME CEO Katie Sweeney gave the trade association’s keynote, during which she announced a new AIME Member Portal (AMP), along with associated membership tiers with benefits for members. The lower tiers give members access to AIME’s Facebook…

Lawsuit Says ‘Narcissistic’ Hsieh Pushed loanDepot to Accept Mortgage Apps Without Docs

Tammy Richards, loanDepot’s former chief operations officer, is accusing her former employer of pushing its workers to accept mortgage applications without documentation. The allegations are found in a civil lawsuit Richards filed against the company on Wednesday. News of the lawsuit was first reported by The New York Times. The lawsuit specifically targets Anthony Hsieh, founder and CEO of California-based mortgage lender, as well as the company’s general counsel Peter Macdonald and ten other unnamed “Does.” “Ms. Richards began to grow concerned about Hsieh, having recognized that his behavior had become more alarming than his usual over-the-top, narcissistic, grandiose personality traits,” the lawsuit alleges. “And that based upon her past experience with Hsieh’s willingness to cross ethical and fiduciary boundaries,…

He’s Back! Anthony Casa To Share AIME Stage With Katie Sweeney At UWM-Sponsored Event 

11 months, 16 days.  That’s how long it took former Association of Independent Mortgage Experts boss Anthony Casa to get back into AIME’s good graces after resigning in the wake of his lewd and misogynistic video texts about the wife of a rival.  Casa, who took a leave of absence in July and officially stepped down in October, will participate in a panel discussion Friday at AIME’s annual Fuse conference – billed as the “largest nationwide gathering of independent mortgage professionals” – at the swanky Bellagio in Las Vegas. The panel will be moderated by Casa’s successor, AIME CEO Katie Sweeney. United Wholesale Mortgage – a longtime backer of AIME and Casa – is the title sponsor of the conference. …

RE/MAX: Home Sales, Median Sale Price Dropped in August

Inventory grew and prices fell in August according to a new report from RE/MAX, the latest sign the current red hot housing market may be cooling. Home sales dropped 3.5% and the Median Sale Price fell 1.2% to $335,000, according to RE/MAX’s National Housing Report for August. With fall just around the corner, August’s numbers suggest there won’t be any more record-breaking high points this year. August saw homes sitting on the market for only an average of 24 days. Month’s Supply of Inventory fell from 1.5 in July to 1.3 in August. Last August it was 1.9. A six months supply indicates a market balanced equally between buyers and sellers. Of the 51 metro areas surveyed in August, zero…

UWM Launches In-House Appraisal Service

United Wholesale Mortgage (UWM) is launching an in-house appraisal service, giving its brokers an alternative to appraisal management companies (AMC) starting October 1. The program gives UWM the ability to handle the appraisal on its own by contracting directly with appraisers. UWM CEO Mat Ishbia said AMCs are “middlemen” that cause unnecessary delays in the lending process. “We understand how important it is for independent mortgage brokers to get a fast and efficient appraisal on their borrowers’ home,” Ishbia said. “This new team will be using state of the art technology, making it faster and easier, so brokers and borrowers can get the elite client service they deserve and expect from UWM.” AMCs are regulated by state agencies and are required…

Genworth Values Mortgage Insurer Enact Holdings at $3.3 Billion in IPO

Richmond, Va.-based Genworth Financial, Inc. announced Monday that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Enact Holdings, Inc., plans to offer 13.3 million shares priced at $19 to $20 each in its upcoming initial public offering. This would value the mortgage insurer at up to $3.3 billion. The company said all shares will be sold by Genworth and it will not receive any proceeds. (Enact), has amended its registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) in connection with its proposed initial public offering. In that filing, Enact states the following regarding the use of proceeds: “As selling stockholder, Genworth Holdings, Inc. (GHI) will receive all net proceeds from the sale of shares of Enact’s common stock,” the…

Rent.com Releases Eviction Information Tracker

In an effort to better represent the housing crisis as it affects renters and homeowners across America, Rent.com has created an interactive tracking dashboard for eviction and foreclosure information in the U.S. The pandemic has exacerbated financial pressure and housing security for millions of Americans, a problem that has come to a head since the Supreme Court ruled the national eviction moratorium imposed by the Biden administration was unconstitutional. At least 11 million renters are considered seriously behind on payments, and an estimated 3.6 million households could be evicted in the next few months. “While affordable housing has been debated for years, housing insecurity, wealth gaps and eviction trends have become more prominent during the pandemic,” the website reads. “As…

NAR, Zillow Antitrust Lawsuit Moves Forward

A U.S. District Court judge denied motions by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and Zillow to dismiss an antitrust challenge from the real-estate tech company Real Estate Exchange (REX), saying that REX provided sufficient evidence that NAR and Zillow conspired to restrain trade and to harm consumers. REX sued on the grounds that a NAR segregation rule— a rule followed by Zillow that separates new technology listings on its site from traditional broker listings in a different tab, titled “Other Listings”– violates antitrust and consumer protection laws. They argued the policy privileges traditional broker models that include 5-6% commission fees for buyers. REX said the “Other Listings” tab was a “recessed, obscured, and deceptive tab that consumers do not…