Rocket Executive Slams UMW for ‘Shocking’ Decision on Refinance Fees

An executive with Rocket is slamming the decision of United Wholesale Mortgage to forego a straight-up elimination of refinancing fees, calling it an act of “shocking dishonesty.”

UMW has raised eyebrows for its refusal to wholly drop the adverse market refinancing fee from its operations after the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced an end to the fee; UMW CEO Mat Ishiba has said that consumers can forego the fee by “sort of a manual process.”

Austin Niemiec, the executive vice president of Rocket, told Mortgage Professional America this week that Ishiba is engaged in “shocking dishonesty” in his approach to the refinancing fee.

“We expected every single lender in America to [drop the fee], but to my knowledge UWM is the only large lender that decided to keep the fee,” Niemiec said, claiming that the money from the fees “goes directly to [Ishiba] and his pocket.”

Niemiec said his own company has refunded at least $30 million since the fee was dropped.

A UMW spokesman, meanwhile, told MPA that the company “always does right by brokers and consumers” and that it has been refunding fees to consumers since the FHFA announcement.