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1st Reverse Financial Services LLC - Retail, Wholesale - Reverse Mortgages

2009-07-28

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stories: reversemortgagedaily.com, reversemortgagedaily.com, msn.com

Update - Midday: We have spoken with 1st Reverse President Ralph E. Rosynek, Jr. who indicated all employees would eventually be let go as the operation is wound down, although some retail originators may have the opportunity for employment elsewhere within WSFS. At peak, Rosynek estimated the retail channel had between 40 and 50 loan officers, with another 7 employees comprising the team of wholesale AE's. The corporate office hosts a support team of about 15 persons who will remain to close out the existing pipeline.

Data available from HUD's Neighborhood Watch system indicates the company originated over 300 reverse mortgages in the past year with a total of 739 overall for the two years ending July 30, 2009.

Original Listing: With it's earnings release early on 2009-07-27, WSFS Financial Corp. (NASDAQ: WSFS) announced a decision to "wind down" its reverse mortgage subsidiary, 1st Reverse Financial Services, LLC.. The parent company of WSFS Bank, WSFS Financial had acquired Westmont, IL-based 1st Reverse Financial in April 2008 as a "start-up initiative." The company "never reached breakeven levels," according to a statement by President and CEO Mark A. Turner. From Reverse Mortgage Daily:

"Effective at the end of business on July 31st, 1st Reverse will no longer accept any new loan applications from the company's network of retail loan originators and wholesale lending partners. However, the company will process, underwrite and fund all loans currently submitted or received by July 31st."

1st Reverse Financial's wholesale channel catered to both FHA-approved and non-approved brokers nationwide. According to the WSFS earnings release, 1st Reverse Financial "recorded $654,000 in fee income during the second quarter, an increase of $98,000, over the first quarter of 2009." Actual volume info and the number of employees (or any associated layoffs) were not available at the time of this post, but we have several calls in to representatives with 1st Reverse Financial. In the meantime, we found a bit of background info in the form of this bio on Dave Cesario, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing:

"Reverse is widely recognized as an industry leader in quality Reverse Mortgage training, products and support services. The company was recently recognized as one of the top 25 producing Reverse Mortgage companies in the nation."

WSFS will continue to originate reverse mortgages through its own retail franchise operation in Delaware, touted by Turner as the "top reverse mortgage originator in Delaware for the past year and a half."

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Important: This company is on our list of lending operations that have "imploded". However, please note that "imploded" is a somewhat subjective and does not necessarily mean operations are ceased permanently: it can mean bankruptcy filing, temporary but open-ended halting of major operations, or "firesale" acquisition. All information here is provisional, and may contain inaccuracies (especially newer information). If you are planning on doing business with this company or any other one listed on this site, you should inquire with them directly on whether they can still meet your needs. Many are still operating in some capacity.