Fitch Ratings said today it has assigned a construction loan servicer rating to JP Morgan Commercial Real Estate Loan Administration (CRELA), assigning the company a rating of ‘acceptable’ as a servicer of commercial real estate loans. The rating was a first for JP Morgan’s servicing unit, and among the industry’s first assessments of commercial loan servicing capabilities. Fitch did not say if JP Morgan was the first construction servicer it had rated, although a search of the company’s website by Housing Wire did not turn up similar evaluations for any other servicing entities. Based in Phoenix, with regional servicing offices in Chicago, New York, Houston and Dallas, CRELA currently services construction loans mainly for its parent. As of Sept. 30, 2006, CRELA’s real estate loan servicing portfolio consisted of 1,532 properties valued at $7.66 billion. Fitch rates construction loan servicers as ‘Acceptable’ or ‘Unacceptable,’ and is the first rating agency to publish criteria regarding the rating of construction loan pools. For more information, visit http://www.fitchratings.com.