MortgagePolitics & Money

Wintrust Mortgage acquiring Veterans First Mortgage

Veterans First on track to originate more than $800 million in loans in 2017

Wintrust Mortgage is about to increase its presence in Department of Veterans Affairs lending.

Wintrust Financial Corporation, the parent company of Wintrust Mortgage, announced this week that Wintrust Mortgage is acquiring Veterans First Mortgage, a lender that specializes in VA lending.

As these types of deals often are, the details are a bit complex.

Wintrust Mortgage is a division of Barrington Bank & Trust Company, which is a subsidiary of Wintrust Financial Corporation.

In this deal, Wintrust Mortgage reached an agreement to acquire “certain assets and assume certain liabilities” of iFreedom Direct Corporation, which does business as Veterans First Mortgage.

Veterans First Mortgage is a consumer direct lender that operates three offices, two in Salt Lake City and one in San Diego.

According to details provided by Wintrust, Veterans First is projected to originate more than $800 million in loans in 2017 and has approximately 400 employees.

As part of the agreement, Wintrust will acquire the mortgage servicing rights on approximately 9,000 loans from Veterans First Mortgage. Those loans carry an estimated unpaid principal balance of $1.4 billion.

According to Wintrust, the deal will bring Veterans First’s “robust platform that integrates CRM technology, customized loan origination software and telephony systems to produce an efficient loan experience for its customers” into the fold at Wintrust.

“This acquisition will allow Wintrust Mortgage to expand both in size and structure,” Wintrust Mortgage President and CEO David Hrobon said. “Veterans First Mortgage has built a terrific consumer direct lending business with some of the industry’s brightest leadership and employees. We look forward to the synergistic opportunities that will arise from this merger of talent.”

The companies did not disclose the specific financial details of the deal, but the companies did say that a “significant portion of the purchase price for Veterans First Mortgage assets will be conditioned upon certain future profitability measures.”

“Veterans First Mortgage has built a reputation on quality loans, expertise and customer-first service and we know this is also true of Wintrust Mortgage,” Veterans First Mortgage President and CEO Kevin Gates said. “We share a common culture and have common leadership styles, so this acquisition could not be a better fit.”

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