Ishbia Beaten Out in Bronco’s Ownership Bid by Walmart Billionaire

Mat Ishbia’s bid to become part-owner of the Denver Broncos got sacked by the deep pockets of Rob Walton, an heir to the legendary Walmart fortune. But that doesn’t mean the hard-charging – and sometimes controversial – Chief Executive at United Wholesale Mortgage is out of the game. “I do love sports and … one day in the future would I want to own a sports team? I would say yes,” Ishbia told Crain’s Detroit Business last year.  Not a surprising stance for a CEO who’s built his brand around his status as a walk-on member of Michigan State University’s 2000 championship basketball team. But his big-dollar backing of men’s MSU athletics may actually hinder Ishbia’s hopes of entering the exclusive…

Work From Home Debate Heats Up Again In Mortgage Industry

By KIMBERLEY HAAS The president of a reverse mortgage company is claiming that Elon Musk’s message to Tesla employees unfairly bashes the benefits of remote work and that since going fully remote in 2020 his company has been voted by its employees as a top place to work. Musk is demanding that Tesla office workers return to in-person work or leave the company. “Anyone who wishes to do remote work must be in the office for a minimum (and I mean *minimum*) of 40 hours per week or depart Tesla. This is less than we ask of factory workers,” Musk wrote in leaked emails. Although Tesla is an automotive and clean energy company, news of Musk’s demands sparked a new…

UWM Pays $2.7M to Settle Overtime Lawsuit

United Wholesale Mortgage has ended one of its ongoing legal battles by paying $2.7 million to settle a lawsuit claiming the company unfairly treated its employees, including forcing them to work overtime without pay. In a letter to employees, UWM executive vice president Allen Beydoun claimed the company did nothing wrong and workers should not expect the culture inside the nation’s largest wholesale mortgage lender to change.  “While we are extremely confident that our account executives were and are fairly and accurately compensated for the work and time dedicated to their business, UWM chose to stop spending additional time and money with attorneys,” Beydoun wrote. According to a report in the Detroit Free Press, the arbitrator made no ruling on…

Ishbia Under Fire After Slamming Rocket Mortgage As The Industry Sees Reductions In Workforce

By KIMBERLEY HAAS The CEO of United Wholesale Mortgage has come under fire after posting online that he is “disappointed” with Rocket Mortgage’s decision to offer buyouts to members of its workforce. Mat Ishbia posted on LinkedIn last week that this should not be necessary for a company that made over $5 billion in profits last year. “These 2,000+ people will struggle to find new jobs, and I think it’s disgusting that they’re thinking short term and are solely focused on cutting a few million per month in costs… this is the wrong thing to do to people,” Ishbia said. Ishbia went on to write that they have not had a single layoff in 35 years at UWM. The post…

NGUYEN: UWM’s Unfair Ultimatum ‘Has Divided Our Community’

By DARIA BACHMANN “As a broker, I believe in choice. A broker is supposed to shop around, look for what’s best for the consumer. I don’t want people to coerce me, I try to have freedom as a broker.” That’s the view of Thuan Nguyen, CEO of Loan Factory, who talked to The Mortgage Note about the impact on his company and customers from United Wholesale Mortgage’s anti-competition ultimatum one year ago. UWM’s controversial CEO Mat Ishbia told brokers like the Loan Factory they had to stop working with Rocket Mortgage and Fairway Independent Mortgage if they wanted to keep offering loans from his company. In recent weeks, Ishbia proved his threats were more than mere bullying. He’s taking legal…

America’s MoneyLine CEO Fights Back, Calls Out Mat Ishbia And Files Counter-Complaint Against UWM

By KIMBERLEY HAAS The CEO of California-based America’s MoneyLine is fighting back after being slapped with a $2.8 million lawsuit from lending giant United Wholesale Mortgage. In a statement released on Friday morning, Shawn Nevin claimed that UWM uses illegal, anti-competitive practices. At issue is the “All In” policy implemented by UWM CEO Mat Ishbia. Ishbia said in a Facebook Live message last March that brokers who work with Fairway Independent or Rocket Mortgage could no longer work with UWM. “Mat Ishbia’s ‘ultimatum’ is a blatant and desperate attempt to maintain his company’s grip on the throat of mortgage brokers across the country,” Nevin said. “As he works tirelessly to craft a false narrative around being champions of brokers, his…

UWM Embattled on Multiple Fronts Over Treatment of Lenders, Employees

By DARIA BACHMANN United Wholesale Mortgage is facing more public scrutiny as court battles — and backlash from brokers — mount. The second-largest mortgage lender in the nation, UWM has come under criticism over how it treats both its employees and its customers. UWM announced in April it would force brokers to sign an agreement that they will not work with Rocket Mortgage or Fairway Independent Mortgage – or else be banned from work with UWM, the largest wholesale mortgage lender.  Mortgage industry leaders called the ban “unethical and uncompetitive.” Bob Broeksmit, head of the Mortgage Bankers Association, said at the time, “MBA does not condone activities designed to thwart competition in the mortgage market and limit loan options available to borrowers.” UWM,…

UWM Sues Brokerage In Effort to Enforce Its ‘Anti-American’ Restrictions on Lenders

Shawn Nevin, CEO of California-based America’s MoneyLine (AML), is the target of a $2.8 million lawsuit from lending giant United Wholesale Mortgage, and he has one word to describe it: “Anti-American.” At issue is UWM’s controversial “All In” policy, implemented by CEO Mat Ishbia last year. “If you work and send loans and send business to Fairway Independent or Rocket Mortgage … you can’t work with UWM anymore, effective immediately,” Ishbia said in a Facebook Live message last March. His policy sparked a lawsuit from mortgage brokers that is still working its way through the legal system. UWM claims in its lawsuit that AML has sent 560 loans to Fairway and Rocket, in violation of the “All In” agreement. Nevin responded…

Remote Work In Lending: Are UWM Employees Being Unreasonable?

By KIMBERLEY HAAS United Wholesale Mortgage turned heads in the industry last week when it was reported that health officials are investigating the company after receiving complaints about how they are handling COVID, which lead some people to ask why employees in lending are expected to be in their offices to begin with. Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration Director Bart Pickelman confirmed to The Mortgage Note Wednesday that his agency has received 50 complaints against UWM since November 1, 2021.  “MIOSHA currently has one open investigation and other investigations that are currently progressing through the appeals process. MIOSHA cannot provide information on an open investigation,” Pickelman said. A former employee told Fox 2 in Detroit that people who work…

UWM Under Investigation in Wake of COVID Complaints

Michigan-based United Wholesale Mortgage is under scrutiny from both state and county health officials in the wake of complaints about the company’s handling of COVID-19, a Detroit TV station is reporting. The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) Director Bart Pickelman confirmed to The Mortgage Note Wednesday that his agency has received 50 complaints against UWM since November 1, 2021.  “MIOSHA currently has one open investigation and other investigations that are currently progressing through the appeals process. MIOSHA cannot provide information on an open investigation,” Pickelman said. And the Oakland County Health Department has also received numerous complaints about UWM, leaving health officials concerned amid the county’s soaring infection rate.“The test positivity rate in Oakland County is 25.5%. It’s the highest it’s ever…