Home Equity of America - Prime Second Specialist (sub. of Fifth Third Bank)
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Update, April 23: We have received unofficial word that HEA's freeze is temporary, due cutting outside AE staff. Business is reportedly still going on with "core" brokers to the handful of remaining inside AEs; if you think this is relevant to you, you should check with the company before assuming anything about their status. Stay tuned for updates.
Update, April 25: Fifth Third was kind enough to send in an official clarification of their situation, the essentials of which we are posting here with permission:
(Original entry follows).
We have obtained a letter announcing that HEA is shutting down (or more accurately, had ceased accepting new business on Tuesday). Despite HEA's focus on prime, Fifth Third apparently determined it was not worth keeping the unit open, as second liens have become much harder to fund. Housingwire comments on this topic:
We're told that while the prime market in general isn't likely to see much upheaval, that same logic doesn't apply to second liens, which have fallen out of favor with Wall Street at nearly every credit level. [HEA's closure] would seem to be the first item of evidence backing that sort of logic up.
I would also add that it becomes much more difficult to extract one's home equity when one is already near 100% LTV and the "V" portion isn't going up anymore.
HEO operated in 23 states. No word yet on their loan volume or size of the workforce effected.
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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.