A network of independent mortgage brokers throughout the country have banded together to launch a national movement in the mortgage industry, Brokers Rallying Against Whole-tail Lending (BRAWL), an initiative focused on stopping the unethical practices used by “whole-tail lenders.”
The term “whole-tail lender” has been coined by BRAWL to swipe at mortgage lenders that offer both wholesale and retail services on paper, when in reality, their primary business objective is to feed stolen prospect information directly to their affiliate companies.
“Mortgage brokers are beyond tired of various wholesale lenders acting like they’re on our team, when they’re actually just leveraging our relationships to steal our clients for their own retail divisions,” said Anthony Casa, president of Garden State Home Loans and a founding member of BRAWL. “Mortgage broker shops come in all different sizes, and many rely on the technology and resources of wholesale lenders to keep their businesses operational, let alone competitive.”
According to data published by Inside Mortgage Finance, through the first six months of 2017, nearly 2/3 of the Top 25 wholesale lenders in the U.S. actually focus primarily on retail loans.
However, three lenders (Nations Direct Mortgage, Parkside Lending, and United Wholesale Mortgage) stood out as true partners to mortgage brokers. They committed over 90% of their business to wholesale lending.
Since the housing crisis in 2008, mortgage brokers have steadily increased market share from a low point of 6% to nearly 14% currently. The increase can be attributed to factors such as reformed public perception of brokers, regulatory changes that have leveled the playing field with retail lenders and banks, and advancements made in technology by partnering wholesale lenders.
BRAWL was formed in an effort to accelerate that positive momentum for brokers by raising awareness of whole-tail lenders that are stymying continued growth of individual mortgage broker shops and the wholesale channel, alike.
“It is important that mortgage brokers take a stand against these large whole-tailers that are ultimately hurting us in the long-term more than they ever help us in the short-term,” Casa said. “Want to send whole-tailers a strong message? Send your business someplace else.”
Mortgage brokers interested in joining the cause against whole-tailers are invited to sign the petition at www.change.org/p/independent-mortgage-brokers-stop-whole-tail-lending.