With 34 years of experience in the mortgage industry, Patty Arvielo has performed every job on the operations side, learning the business from the ground up. As president of New American Funding, she still books nearly $3 million in home loans a month on her own, while managing operations and sales for the Tustin, California-based company’s headquarters, branches and more than 1,800 employees.
Arvielo has spent the last three decades climbing the ladder, starting at age 15 as a data entry clerk at Transunion Credit. She saw the opportunity to make more money working at a mortgage company and continued to gain on-the-job training.
She’s worked to transform New American Funding into a national mortgage lender and servicer that funds more than $930 million in home loans each month. Under her guidance, in a short amount of time, the company has brought the entire loan process in house – from origination to funding. It was also her experience in residential lending that prompted the company to form its own real estate-based lending division, a community level sales team focused on helping people buy and keep homes.
Opening New American Funding’s first retail branch in 2012, the retail platform has experienced swift growth and now has over 92 branches in operation across the country.
She works closely with her husband, Rick, who oversees technology, marketing, accounting and capital markets. He said her passion for serving underserved borrowers who were disproportionally disadvantaged in the economic meltdown has helped propel and position the company.
“Patty’s personal passion of serving the underserved [occurred] at a time when it was out of fashion,” he said. “She’s Latina and culturally aware, so it was a natural step for her. She is putting buyers into situations of sustainable homeownership.”
As they built the company, they created a channel to specifically focus on underserved borrowers.
“We definitely have a diversity and inclusion plan,” she said. ”If you call our 1-800 number everyone is bilingual. We have a complete bilingual team, including underwriters so they’re aware of cultural differences. Building the team made it easy to offer these loans and the sustainability while adhering to credit boxes, which is hard.”
This year by July, New American served 5,000 Hispanic borrowers, who were split evenly between Federal Housing Authority loans and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans.
The Arvielos are politically active and passionate about ensuring families have access to credit and can achieve the American Dream. Patty is involved in the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals. Her work as chairman of the NAHREP corporate board of governors has inspired many of her New American Funding management-level employees to also obtain local chapter and board positions.
This past year, she has increased the activity of her own Latino Focus Committee, an organization whose mission is to identify and address challenges Hispanic consumers face in their pursuit of homeownership and to enhance the quality of their lending experience.
She also serves on the MBA’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee and is politically involved in the current and future states of mortgage banking, frequently visiting Washington, D.C., to lobby on behalf of the mortgage industry and homeowners.
Arvielo said New American has a good, hardworking staff that has allowed them to serve, whether it’s on the Hill, raising money or supporting charitable causes for the underserved.
“When it comes across with passion, it’s pretty easy to buy in to what Rick and I are doing,” she said. “We communicate the same way we do with our family and it’s slightly contagious. In America, if you don’t have your eye on the Latino market, you’re going to miss out.”