Mortgage Failures May be Highest This Year

April 6, 2009 No Comments »


You may have thought the worst was behind us, but that may not be the case, according to a new tally of mortgage failures from

The publication’s so-called Mortgage Graveyard, a journal of failed, struggling and acquired mortgage lenders, reported 50 mortgage-related company closures in the first quarter alone.

The annualized rate of two hundred closures would nearly double last year’s 120 failures, and outdo the 160 casualties seen in 2007, the most on record since tracking began in 1998.

The rise has been led by federally insured bank failures, which totaled 21 in just the first quarter, not far from the 25 seen all of last year.

First-quarter non-bank closures totaled 25, and another four credit unions were shuttered, including Central States Mortgage and CU National Mortgage, which provided mortgage services to credit unions across the nation.

A number of warehouse lending operations also seized doing business, including those at Chase, National City, Home Loan Consultants Inc., Popular Mortgage Corp. and Residential Loan Centers of America Inc.

Roughly 1,000 loan officers were impacted by the failure of Arizona-based Liberty One Lending, its collapse attributed to slow adoption of FHA loan programs.

Last year, 81 non-banks failed, 25 FDIC-insured institutions closed, and 14 credit unions met their demise, though that total included much bigger names, such as WaMu and Indymac.

The good news is mortgage-related employment opportunities seem to be on the rise as banks and lenders look to better align staff with surging loan application volume, though such employment may be nothing more temporary.

Check out my list of mortgage layoffs, closures, and mergers.

(photo: hamguy)

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