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Banking Financial District

New player enters P.R. reverse mortgage market

The island’s reverse mortgage market is getting more competitive this week with the arrival of Atlanta-based Generation Mortgage, which is introducing its retail banking services to the market.

The privately owned reverse mortgage banker is one of the six Ginnie Mae approved Home Equity Conversion Mortgage Backed Securities issuers in the U.S.

“We’re very excited about being the first Top-10 reverse mortgage lender to open a retail branch in Puerto Rico,” said Scott Peters, President of Generation Mortgage. “Puerto Rico boasts a home ownership rate of 74 percent versus 67 percent in the United States [mainland].”

“Additionally, 29 percent of the households in Puerto Rico have at least one person 65 and older compared to 23 percent in the U.S.,” Peters said. “We’ll be providing older homeowners in Puerto Rico a safe way to access the equity in their home to obtain cash for use as they think best, and still remain in their home.”

A reverse mortgage is a loan available to seniors aged 62 or older, and is used to release the home equity in the property as one lump sum or multiple payments. The homeowner’s obligation to repay the loan is deferred until the owner dies, the home is sold, or the owner leaves.

Local executive Luis Alberto De Jesús will head Generation Mortgage’s local operation, to which he will bring his experience from Senior Mortgage Bankers Inc. in Guaynabo, where he aided in expanding the reverse mortgage business to the territory.

“I have been in the mortgage banking industry for 25 years,” said De Jesús. “Before coming to Generation Mortgage, I used to be a senior executive at Senior Mortgage Bankers, where we played a pivotal role in the recent expansion of the reverse mortgage business in Puerto Rico.”

“It’s tremendously exciting to bring to the Puerto Rican market a financial solution that could literally change the life of a senior in financial need, and Generation Mortgage has a long and proud history of being the leader in customer service in this industry,” De Jesús said.

Generation Mortgage is entering the island’s reverse mortgage banking segment, which is already dominated by Money House Inc. and Senior Mortgage Bankers Inc. Each closed nearly 600 reverse mortgage loans last year. Generation closed 1,414 reverse mortgages in 2010 in the U.S. mainland.

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 30 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other segments of Puerto Rico’s economy.

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