Mahwah, NJ-based Longbridge Financial announced this week significant Q2 growth to its Wholesale Operations team, in addition to introducing key new roles and functions.
Since March, Longbridge has increased its operations team by 47% across various roles in opening, processing, underwriting, closing, and funding. This rapid growth comes in the wake of a surge in loan submissions amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
Due to economic conditions and market volatility, several major banks and lenders were forced to make significant changes in these dire times – halting HELOC applications and scaling back participation in the proprietary reverse mortgage landscape. However, despite ongoing uncertainty, Longbridge Financial and the Longbridge Platinum proprietary product suite held steady resulting in a large spike in volume.
As interest around reverse mortgages peaked, the subsequent flood in loan submissions reached record-highs from both existing loyal clients and new brokers looking to enter the space. This sudden increase in volume impacted the operations team in working to deliver Longbridge’s industry-leading turn times. Expanding the Wholesale team in its efforts to maintain the highest level of service became pivotal.
Of the new professionals joining Longbridge’s Wholesale Operations team, several bring with them a wealth of knowledge and experience in operations, having held various roles with reverse mortgage industry lenders.
“These new additions joining our Operations team are truly an asset to the Longbridge Financial family,” commented Melissa Macerato, EVP Sales & Marketing, Longbridge Financial. “In the midst of unprecedented volume and atypical onboarding conditions due to social distancing regulations, these professionals are quickly getting up-to-speed to help us achieve our turn time commitment so that we can provide the excellent level of service our clients deserve.”
In addition to these new team members, Longbridge also introduced new roles to aid in streamlining operations processes, most notably, promoting Theresa Antonucci to Vice President of Operations and Adrian Prieto to Vice President of the Wholesale Division.
An industry-veteran, Theresa brings over 15 years of reverse mortgage experience to this role, having previously held several management positions with major banks and lenders. Most recently, Theresa has served as Director of Operations, and previously Wholesale Operations Manager at Longbridge Financial.
Another veteran in the reverse mortgage industry, Adrian brings two decades of experience to this role, having specialized in wholesale and retail management. Having spent the past 16 years primarily in the reverse mortgage industry, Adrian joined the Longbridge team in November 2019 as Assistant Vice President and Wholesale Lending Sales Leader, where he’s since grown the team of Account Executives and Partner Liaisons to better serve the broker channel.
“Amid this record-setting volume, we are pleased to be poised for significant growth in the Wholesale space,” Theresa noted. “To better meet demand, we have assembled a team of the best Wholesale Processors in the industry with over 50 years’ experience combined between them.”
Leading the growing Wholesale Processing department is Minh Vu, CRMP. With over 11 years in the mortgage industry and 5 years specifically managing reverse mortgage processing teams, Minh brings a strong management skillset and reverse mortgage experience to Longbridge’s expanding team.
Also new to Longbridge is Lloyd Kushner, who joined the company earlier this year as Head of Underwriting. Bringing over 30 years of mortgage banking experience, Lloyd’s vast array of knowledge has already had a significant impact within the underwriting team.
“Together, we are adjusting workflows to make the process more efficient so we can close loans more quickly for our partners,” Theresa added. “We are prepared to serve all of our wholesale clients with the service and support they’ve come to expect from Longbridge – whether they’re well-versed in reverse mortgages or new to the reverse space altogether.”
And on the topic of clients new to the reverse space, Longbridge’s Reverse Made Easy program is also experiencing significant growth.
Introduced earlier this year, the program is designed to enable brokers with little or no previous reverse mortgage experience to easily originate loans to serve the booming market of senior clients. With an expanding team of Account Executives ready to offer a full suite of services and support, the program has already garnered 120 broker partners, with plans to add several more in upcoming weeks.