Cherry Creek Reverse Mortgage is growing, looking to 2022

Earlier this month, statewide mortgage lender, home equity conversion mortgage (HECM) -backed securities (HMBS) and HECM service provider Cherry Creek Mortgage announced the hiring of reverse mortgage industry veterans Bruce Barnes and Jim Cory manage and grow the reverse mortgage division of the company.

Both men have been appointed to their positions as managing directors of the company’s reverse mortgage division, sharing responsibility for overseeing Cherry Creek’s new development and expansion in retail, wholesale and closed loan production.

It came at a busy time for the reverse mortgage industry in general. Not long after the company announced the appointments, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) announced in its annual report to Congress that the Reverse Mortgage Book of Business within the Mutual Mortgage Insurance (MMI) Fund was positive for the first time since 2015 Area had reached. By the end of the month, the FHA had announced a new HECM credit limit of $ 970,800 for 2022.

To get a better idea of ​​how the new leadership will fit in with the ramp-up of the company’s reverse mortgage business, RMD sat down with Barnes to review progress made so far and plans for 2022.

Expansion of the existing

Cherry Creek is a well known reverse mortgage company with its own HECM division dating back several years. Because of this, management’s decision to reverse-engineer their efforts through the hiring provided Barnes and Cory with a good starting point from which to determine next steps, Barnes explains.

Bruce Barnes

“Fortunately for us, we have a pretty robust operation that is already working,” Barnes told RMD in an interview. “And we’re adding to this every day to set up the workflows and staff the company needs to grow our reverse mortgage business.”

The advancement of Cherry Creek’s reverse mortgage business represents a significant opportunity, according to Barnes, as the company is very well established in the reverse mortgage business while maintaining a strong presence on the traditional mortgage side.

“Cherry Creek’s reverse mortgage business, as well as the company as a whole, is kind of a ‘unicorn opportunity,'” he says. “We all have government approvals, we have our Ginnie Mae ticket in order to be able to certify it, we already have a robust operation in production that is happening today.”

Additionally, the company’s leadership has made an impact on Barnes, he said, and will help the reverse mortgage team leverage that pre-existing forward footprint to reverse add more Cherry Creek employees to the repertoire.

“To be able to join a company that is honestly the best company I have ever seen from a leadership perspective – that has all of the tools needed to grow a business, and really being able to do so Taking Advantage of the Forward Mortgage Channel, with nearly 600 sellers on the forward side that is growing every day, is really just a bonus that we can help the reverse mortgage business grow leave, ”he says.

1st reverse no longer, keep your eyes peeled for industry growth

For the past few years, Cherry Creek’s dedicated reverse mortgage business has been known as 1st Reverse Mortgage USA. The days of using that branding to channel the organization’s reverse mortgage efforts are quickly drawing to a close, says Barnes.

“1st Reverse was a Cherry Creek DBA,” explains Barnes. “The company bought 1st Reverse’s assets [many years ago]. But we will do business under Cherry Creek Mortgage and be a company. “

The mentality guiding this move is greater integration with existing Forward operations and staff, as well as a desire to simply unite under one overarching brand, he said.

“We plan to be another product in the arsenal of the larger Cherry Creek mortgage business and we look forward to it,” said Barnes. “This complete brand change is in progress and is expected to be completed in early 2022.”

The integration with Cherry Creek helps increase the number of resources available to the team. These resources will correspond with strategic enhancements in education and contacting new borrowers.

“The advantage of integrating with Cherry Creek Mortgage is that we have a lot of resources,” explains Barnes. “Our training program is being rebuilt and [become] more robust than today. [We will] be able to create an opportunity to grow the reverse mortgage market. “

Old and new reverse mortgage business

When asked about the growth related to the refinancing industry’s current accelerated level of HECM-to-HECM refinancing, as stated in the FHA’s actuarial report, Barnes indicated that refinancing will be a component of volume if it is determined that such a transaction will benefit a borrower. However, growth efforts are focused on how the forward workforce in the company can be brought up to speed on the reverse gear.

“I know a lot of people are doing HECM-to-HECM refinances right now, which is important and we will be, but we also really want to grow the reverse mortgage market,” says Barnes. “That means being able to integrate forward originators into the reverse mortgage product and thus contribute to the growth of the market.”

Growth will be the motto, says Barnes. That means refinancing will be on the organization’s repertoire, but looking at other components of the reverse mortgage business will be crucial in propelling the totals in a positive direction, he says.

“Our focus will really be on expanding the reverse mortgage loan market,” said Barnes. “HECM-to-HECMs will always be part of our business, but we certainly want to expand in other directions. [We’re looking at] HECM for Purchase, the new HECM business, and expansion into other proprietary reverse mortgage opportunities through possibly partnering with several of the institutes currently offering them in the market. “

Barnes declined to name the proprietary product options the company will offer, saying only that such partnerships are imminent.

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