The Reverse Mortgage King is Overthrown, Long Live MetLife?

Wells Fargo officially lost its top spot for retail and wholesale endorsement volume in October and was overtaken by MetLife, who had 1,011 total endorsements compared to Wells’ 789, according to Reverse Market Insight’s HECM Originators newsletter for October 2011.

While MetLife didn’t quite surpass the former reverse mortgage lender’s retail volume, it is expected to do so in November, says RMI.

Other retail lenders such as American Advisors Group, New Day Financial, and Great Oak Lending have seen their endorsement volume surge even as the industry as a whole lags, reports the newsletter.

When endorsements declined 16.8% in October, it looked like the void created by Wells Fargo’s absence was to blame. However, a closer look at home equity conversion mortgage (HECM) originations reveals an even bigger drop in wholesale endorsements, at 18.3%, versus retail’s 16.1% decrease, despite Wells Fargo’s volume being 93% retail, according to RMI.

Source: Reverse Market Insight, HECM Originators October 2011

Retailers have picked up some of the slack, with AAG, the fourth-ranked HECM retail lender, seeing its volume shoot up 49.3% in the month, a 132.5% increase year-to-date. New Day Financial, ranked eleventh, was up 34% in October, slightly outperformed by 17th-ranked Great Oak Lending, up 34.8%. Open Mortgage, at #23, had a 25% volume growth.

Top-ten HECM originators with positive monthly numbers include #3 One Reverse Mortgage (8%), #5 Urban Financial (2.3%), #6 Generation Mortgage (9.9%), #9 The First National Bank of Layton (14.9%), and #10 Reverse Mortgage USA (7.5%).

Wells Fargo’s October volume plummeted 45.6%, and MetLife and Security One both saw double-digit losses.

Written by Alyssa Gerace

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