In terms of tourism, Pontiac, Mich., isn’t a major destination. In a suburban setting, the 16-mile Clinton River Trail contains flora and fauna, while the four-story Erebus Haunted Attraction serves up thrills and chills. As a cultural focal point, the circa-1921 Flagstar Strand Theater attracts mavens with its Renaissance architecture.
Despite this, about 62,000 residents are flocking to the city about 20 miles northwest of Detroit like never before. The reason they’re going is not to see the sights, but to get training as independent brokers at the United Wholesale Mortgage headquarters.
There is a possibility that 2023 could be the year of the independent broker, as more and more people move from retail to wholesale. Over the past two years, the number of brokers leaving the retail channel has steadily increased. The number of loan officers leaving retail for wholesale is often cited at 100 per day.
Statistic analysis is one thing, but speaking with people who are making the switch is another. A first-hand account of why brokers are migrating from retail has been provided by MPA interviews with brokers who are part of the exodus.
Perry Hilzendeger was among the first to make the switch from Wells Fargo to Home Point Financial as president of servicing, after working for well over 30 years at the bank.
As Hilzendeger makes the transition from retail to wholesale lending, he is just one of many American mortgage professionals doing so. According to him, a rise in the number of lenders loan officers can send deals to has benefitted many of those who have made the switch. Since they have access to so many channels, they can choose which is best for their clients based on the pricing, service, and capacity of each lender.