Mar. 11: Ops, LO (incl. SBA) jobs; marketing, broker, non-QM products; training & events, many over the phone

First, a note of clarification. Yesterday’s commentary mentioned that there was talk of “warehouse banks temporarily suspending funding refi biz.” I received several notes stating that while one warehouse bank has done this, others are totally open for business and eager to continue to support their clients, and emphasizing the need for a trusted partner. Yes, there’s a lot going on out there with this tidal wave of business. But how big is the wave? I received this email from Scott Happ, CEO of Optimal Blue. “With our systems being on the front-end of a large percentage of this market activity, we have a unique perspective on where we are and what is yet to come. We do have an early indication as to the magnitude of the volume tsunami with which this industry is faced. Since March 1st, we have processed over $73 billion in rate locks, far outstripping previous records. Based on this pace of activity and our overall market share, our preliminary calculations show that the market’s run rate is in excess of $5 trillion of annual originations.” (This is out of over $15 trillion of mortgages; the MBA forecasts $2.61 trillion.)


Thrive Mortgage is attracting the best and brightest talent in the industryThrive recently announced the addition of Marla Guillaume as Director of Multi-Channel Origination just prior to the annual company Summit in Austin. “We could not be more thrilled to have Marla in such an important position,” stated Randell Gillespie, National Sales Director for Thrive. “Her experience and reputation in the industry is unmatched, and the growth she will certainly bring is a great complement to her vast experience leading top-level teams.” Guillaume, a former board member of multiple statewide and national industry organizations, cites Thrive’s culture, innovative thinking, and operational expertise as her primary motivators for joining the team. “From the first visit, I knew this company is destined for greatness.  Meeting so many amazing people at Summit solidified that I’ve made the right move.” For more information on available positions, please reach out to Chris Karageorge.

What’s your story? Academy Mortgage wants to hear it. This simple yet powerful question was the theme of Academy’s annual 2020Leadership Summit. Recognizing that people are interconnected through stories, the Summit featured oversized storybooks full of team members’ accounts of individuals who have made an impact on their lives. Inspirational speakers shared how storytelling works in business, can inspire change, and motivates others to become their best self. More than 300 leaders from across the country attended the two-day event, where they also learned tips on how to share their stories and how to be better listeners. As is typical of Academy events, the Summit included a service activity to pack 60,000 meals for Rise Against Hunger. Click here to watch video highlights from the eventContact SVP Bill Sohan if you’re interested in opportunities to connect with your peers and use storytelling to achieve your Potential.

Did you know business loans extend to self-employed borrowers?  Makes sense, right? As long as the loan proceeds are used for a business purpose, a self-employed borrower is eligible. World Business Lenders provides hyper-flexible loan solutions for businesses, including the self-employed, either because they can’t qualify elsewhere (i.e., junior lien positions behind construction loan), or because they need the proceeds faster than other lenders can close (i.e., an SBA loan). In these cases, most LOs turn away the borrower who then has to find a merchant cash advance (MCA) loan program with exorbitant fees and rates. A business loan from WBL is the answer since the credit decision is primarily based on equity in just about any form of real estate available (i.e., primary residence or a gas station) and on deposit activity of business bank statements (DTI, FICO, personal finances irrelevant). LOs can offer this program in all 50 states regardless of licensing; RESPA does not apply. Phil Grossfield recently joined World Business Lenders reuniting him with the former owner and executive team from MortgageIT. He is currently taking loan applications and hiring AEs in SoCal and AZ.


Accenture, the leading global provider of mortgage services for the US mortgage industry, is hiring for underwriter and processor positions in its Charlotte and Sacramento operations centers. “As a talent-led organization, Accenture puts people first. We embrace diversity as a source of creativity, innovation and competitive advantage. This commitment to our people is reflected in Accenture being recently named in Fortune’s Top 100 Best Companies to Work For and having been on this list for the past 12 years. We have competitive salaries, great benefits and paid time off. If you’re looking to be a part of a team where you feel valued and want to learn more about these positions click here.”


Gateway Mortgage, a division of Gateway First Bank, had a record 2019 with $7.6 billion loans funded. Almost 500 team members, representing over 160 mortgage centers in 40 states, attended Gateway’s recent Sales Rally. Gateway opened 34 new offices in 2019 making for many new faces in the crowd. Approximately 100 loan officers and teams were recognized during the annual Sales Rally as top producers, rising stars top teams, and more. One of the most prestigious recognitions is the Team Player Award. Voted upon by Gateway’s mortgage operations personnel, it is awarded to the Branch Manager and Loan Officer that most exemplifies a team player attitude. The winners of this award are collaborative problem solvers and show a willingness to put other people’s feelings and needs in front of their own. This year’s winners were branch manager Jack Little and loan officer Mac Dadyan. Visit for a bright future.


Lender products & services

Exception-based wholesale lender, FundLoans is improving Super Jumbo underwriting by offering 48-hour turn times for loan amounts greater than $1.5MM. In addition, FundLoans is proud to recognize the newest members of the executive teamChristine Rembao, VP of Operations and Jerry Tubbs, VP of Credit Risk, for their contributions to the company’s success in redefining non-QM and make-sense lending. “FundLoans’ primary mission is to provide an all-hands-on-deck experience that shows brokers how much we too, care about their loans,” said Rembao. With FundLoans, brokers can expect excellence, a team-oriented approach, out-the-box thinking and innovation. Contact FundLoans at or 866-562-0967 for more information.

GSF Mortgage Corporation (GSF) continues to make its mark as “best in class” as a Single Close Construction lender for FHA, VA, USDA, FNMA, and Jumbo loans. Additionally, GSF offers a premium second home option. Under FNMA guidelines, clients may offer borrowers the opportunity to build a second home, taking advantage of historically low rates. Also, if you have a client thinking about retirement, you can now offer your clients the opportunity to build a dream vacation home. At retirement, your borrowers now have the option to live where they once vacationed. GSF also offers Jumbo second home financing without leveraging a third party. All draws are handled by GSF, ensuring a quick, accurate, and transparent draw administration process. Additionally, it provides your client and builder partners with a single point of contact to ask questions at any time. Contact Robert Stephens (561-715-1064) to learn more.

How low will the 10-year go, and what effect will the continued drops in market indices have on mortgage rates? If anyone had the perfect answer to that question, they wouldn’t be reading this. Originators industry-wide are overcapacity, and purchase season is around the corner. While originators concentrate on capitalizing on their refinance pipelines, it is critical not to forget about their purchase business. Being ready for purchase money season means more than just having the traditional product lines available. Originators, now more than ever, need to be prepared to offer alternative products like Non-QM to meet the needs of their referral sources and clients. Over the past 12 months, Deephaven Mortgage has rolled out its full suite of IDENTI-FI technology tools, including the IDENTI-FI AUS, IDENTI-FI Scenario Calculator, IDENTI-FI Bank Statement Calculator, and the IDENTI-FI Scenario Desk. All of these tools are aimed at driving technology into the hands of the originator to help them “IDENTI-FI” whether their client is eligible for Non-QM financing. Get in touch today and get started readying your Non-QM purchase pipeline with the help of the Deephaven Team and technology. Contact (Wholesale) or (Correspondent) or visit

The Association of Independent Mortgage Experts is extending the submission deadline for the inaugural AIME Broker Rankings to March 31. The rankings are the first in the industry to feature lists based on data from independent mortgage brokerages and loan originators who are working solely in the wholesale channel. AIME Broker Rankings will recognize the top-producing, fastest-growing and most accomplished independent mortgage brokers and brokerages. Those that qualify and are confirmed as part of the final AIME Broker Rankings will receive a digital recognition badge that individuals can use on their websites and social media. The AIME Broker Rankings are part of AIME’s commitment to increasing the visibility of the independent mortgage broker community by highlighting the achievements of the men and women working in their own communities to bring the best mortgage options to their clients. For more information about the rankings visit

In order to support the influx in today’s marketplace, Stearns Wholesale Lending is leaning on smart tools to create a faster and easier client experience. With rates sitting at historic lows, working with a lender that has the capital backing, the right fulfillment growth plan and pricing strategy to support the Wholesale community is critical. As a lending community we must work smarter and partner together to ensure we can take advantage of the opportunity that lies ahead. To be contacted by Stearns, click HERE.

PROTECT YOUR POND. Right now everyone is fishing out of someone else’s pond, but the smart lenders are protecting their ponds from poachers. The winners in this market will be those who protect their database while bringing in the most profitable new opportunities. If you’re just fishing in other people’s ponds, you’re losing the best customers… your existing ones! Turn on the most sophisticated borrower retention system in the industry. Don’t wait… Don’t hesitate… click here and be live within 30 days.

Trainings and events

Yes, many large group gatherings have been cancelled by organizers. But smaller groups are still meeting, events farther out are still “on” at this point, and some training & events have moved to webinars or telephone conferences.

For example, today at 2PM ET XINNIX, The Mortgage Academy presents its quarterly Leadership Lessons Webinar: “Beyond the Daily Commentary: A Live Q&A with Rob Chrisman.” I am looking forward to answering your questions in this live format on the web. When you register, you can submit your questions for me to answer. In addition to this interactive session, XINNIX will share a timely and much needed solution to help leaders immediately bring relief to their current operational challenges fast. If you don’t know XINNIX, they are the premier performance development company serving our industry.

Tomorrow Join National Mortgage Professional Magazine and First Equity Funding 2PM ET/11AM PT to learn how to “Boost Your Overall Loan Origination by Working with Real Estate Investors.” Christian Pepe and Anthony Palmiotto will dive into how to work with real estate investors to not only increase your business, but also dramatically increase your conventional and FHA business.

The California MBA’s Mortgage Technology & Marketing Committee’s (MTAM) next webinar will be on March 19th, and is titled “Consumer Controlled Data is King”. The value of data has never been higher (it’s been called the “new oil”), and the all-star panel will focus on the basics of data aggregation, how it drives the mortgage process, up the funnel with mortgage readiness, consumers and their willingness to share data, all with the practical lender viewpoint in mind. The panel includes Brian Vieaux, President of FinLocker; Kevin Peranio, Chief Lending Officer at PRMG; Paul Diegelman, VP of Digital Payments and Data Aggregation at Fiserv; and John Seroka of Seroka Brand Development.  Registration is free and open to anyone in the industry.

National MI is offering the following training webinars through the National MI University in March: March 11th, Cultural Outreach: How to Step Up Your Video Marketing, March 18th, Mortgage Insurance 101 with Nancy Early, and March 19th, 7 Ways to Manage Email, Avoid Inbox Overload, and Control Your Workday.

Franklin American Mortgage Wholesale Customer Training Calendar has been published. This month’s calendar offers a variety of training opportunities such as: Loan Processing, The Secrets to Being a Networking Superstar, Evaluating Borrower Assets and 7 Ways to Manage Email.

FHA is offering a free, onsite training in Kansas City on April 14th. This credit underwriting training will provide an overview of FHA underwriting procedures and address various industry-related frequently asked questions (FAQs) related to FHA’s Single Family Housing Policy Handbook. While’s you’re in KC, on the 15th FHA has appraisal training will cover FHA appraisal requirements, including FHA appraisal protocol and updates to FHA appraisal policy as outlined in FHA’s Single Family Housing Policy Handbook.

There’s TMBA’s 104th Annual Convention, April 19-21. Take advantage of early pricing.

The California MBA is hosting the Mortgage Innovator’s Conference, a premier mortgage industry event featuring speakers and companies that will provide practical innovation and improvement strategies for mortgage banking and digital mortgage implementation. It will take place at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina, May 3-5.  Be sure to make your hotel reservation today to take advantage of discounted room rates!

Brian Montgomery, Assistant HUD Secretary, will return to the National Settlement Services Summit (NS3) June 10-12 in Naples FL. More than 800 professionals from across the country attend NS3. Comprehensive educational presentations and dynamic panel discussions are the focus.

Capital markets

The word of the day yesterday was “recovery.” Treasury yields shot up, as did both global stocks and oil prices. While that has many market participants breathing a sigh of relief, with Treasury yields across the curve gaining +15-30 bps by the end of the day, I’d venture to say a more apt word is “volatility.” Governments are stepping up their efforts to combat the economic fallout from the virus: President Trump met with Republican lawmakers to discuss a payroll tax cut, Italy announced an $11 billion aid package as the whole country is on a travel lockdown, Japan announced a second aid package worth $4 billion, and the UK cut interest rates and unveiled its first post-Brexit budget.

The virus has exposed a dangerous weakness in the U.S. economy: heavily leveraged companies. Business debt now exceeds that of households for the first time in almost three decades. Goldman Sachs CFO said that the bank is seeing reduced liquidity and rising funding costs. Interestingly enough, the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index posted an increase in February from January.

This morning we learned of a big jump in mortgage applications from the MBA for the week ending March 6: +55.4 percent from one week earlier, and the MBA now forecasts total mortgage originations to come in around $2.61 trillion this year, a 20.3 percent gain from 2019’s volume ($2.17 trillion). Refinance originations are expected to double earlier MBA projections, jumping 36.7 percent to around $1.23 trillion. Purchase originations are now forecasted to rise 8.3 percent to $1.38 trillion. The 10-year yield saw a 42-bps decline during the reporting period, though mortgage rates only declined 8 bps in the 30-year term, amid capacity and pipeline hedging issues.

We’ve also had February CPI (+.1 percent) and Core CPI (+.2 percent) figures. The Treasury then conducts the second leg of this week’s mini-Refunding when they auction $24 billion reopened 10-year notes in the afternoon. The calendar closes with the February Treasury budget. We begin today with Agency MBS prices better by .125 and the 10-year yielding .7 percent after closing yesterday +25 bps to 0.75 percent.

John Travolta was hospitalized late Tuesday night for suspected COVID-19. He had chills, they were multiplying and he was losing control, but doctors now confirm that it was only Saturday Night Fever and they assure everyone that he is Staying Alive.

Visit for more information on our industry partners, access archived commentaries, or to subscribe to the Daily Mortgage News and Commentary. If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “Drinking from a Firehose is Not a Long Term Business Model” If you have the inclination, make a comment on what I have written, or on other comments so that folks can learn what’s going on out there from the other readers.


(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. Currently there are hundreds of mortgage professionals looking for operations, secondary and management roles. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to Copyright 2020 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)

Rob Chrisman