It all started two weeks ago when C2 Financial announced it was cutting ties with Quicken Loans because the lender was not sending C2 customers back to C2 when they requested a refi.
In response, Quicken Loans accused United Wholesale Mortgage and the Association of Independent Mortgage Experts of masterminding the whole thing in an attempt to wage a smear campaign.
And so that’s what it set out to do, sending us surveillance footage last week allegedly showing UWM employees papering the area outside Quicken Loans' Detroit and Phoenix offices with flyers bashing the company.
Since then, several loan officers sent letters to the editor at HousingWire expressing their opinion in the "Battle for Borrowers."
Here's what 4 loan officers had to say:
Loan Officer #1: After 17 years of being a loan originator and the last 12 years being a mortgage broker, I would consider myself an expert in knowing where clients can go and get the best deals. You see, I was a broker when it was somewhat popular, and stayed a broker when it became VERY unpopular. The main thing that both seasons had in common for me, is that my ultimate competition was the same, the banks/bankers. (retail) I very seldom found myself competing with other brokers, because as many brokers as there were, we were still in small numbers compared to retail originators.
Now, I’m what you would call a mom & pop shop, so I couldn’t and still can’t match the marketing dollars of the large banks/bankers, so I had and still have to work hard to get and keep my name in front of consumers and referral sources. How is this possible? My Rates…. You see, with a larger staff, they can handle more volume, and move more volume faster than me, but when it comes to really taking care of the client, that’s where I shut them down.
Loan Officer #2: While some of the recent articles are almost comical in their accusations, I’m certainly not “picking sides” with my lenders. I use them both for different products when it fits my clients best interest.
"That being said, I am very happy with the BRAWL movement and the goals of AIME. I’ve been a broker for 10+ years, and our line of business has been smeared and insulted by banks and retail lenders the entire time. I’ve always been able to win business with superior service, and far better pricing that my retail and banking competitors. I applaud AIME for bringing attention to our business channel, and encouraging positive growth for the broker side of business. Ultimately it is the consumer who benefits the most by having more competition from their mortgage lenders."
Loan Officer #3: I am writing to share feedback as a new independent mortgage broker. I previously worked for the Retail & Retention channels for a few big name lenders in Orange County, CA. These companies overcharge the customers as they have high margins and are definitely over staffed. I also noticed that the leads we were going after were the Loans in their portfolio which came from the brokers they were essentially working with. Their process is counter-productive as upwards of 5 people touch the same loan. Starting with a loan officer Assistant, the loan officer, set up processor, submission processor, closing processor, Underwriter, quality control and lastly the funder. I would always advocate the drawbacks of having 3 different processors for one loan as the duties of a "true" processor include setting up file, submitting it to underwriting and working on the approval conditions. These words went unheard In each of the different companies I worked for. I was just a single soldier ant. My input did not matter. Going back to the margins, the rates are high because ultimately the business needs to make a profit. At the end of the day, the customer ends up paying the price either up front or throughout the years with a much higher interest rate.
Brokers on the other hand offer much lower rates due to lower margins and of course going through the lender's wholesale channel. The customers will 100% benefit and do not pay the ultimate price. It's an ongoing battle as most of these wholesale lenders do dip into their portfolio and feed their retail & portfolio retention departments with our loans.
Loan Officer #4: Regarding the disputes between UWM and Quicken Loans, our company continues to focus on our investors who will support us in our focus to provide our customers with the best service and rates possible. I really appreciate AIME’s stance: the most important message is to stress the fact that borrowers are getting lowest interest rates & best service by working with reputable/highly reviewed mortgage brokers. We work extremely hard to ensure the client’s not only getting the best interest rate but also has the best loan program and service possible.
The message needs to continue to focus on what is best for the consumer. What’s best for the consumers are mortgage brokers!