Freddie Mac recently announced the winners of its Home Possible RISE Awards, and mortgage originators nationwide were recognized for their commitments to sustainable homeownership.
RISE (Recognizing Individuals for Sustained Excellence), is an annual program designed to recognize Freddie Mac’s top clients for their exceptional performance in seven categories with Home Possible mortgages, Freddie Mac’s affordable lending program for low-to moderate-income homebuyers.
Guild Mortgage loan officers Brandon Andrews, Erica Davis, and Nick Maddock received recognition in the Fastest Growth and HFA Advantage Volume categories.
Davis has been in the business for 16 years and is based out of Myrtle Beach South Carolina. In her market, she said, a lot of people from first time homebuyers to retirees fit in the low- to moderate-income category.
“I do think it has opened the door for more folks, and it’s a good talking point too, because it’s an alternative to FHA. We market it on social media and to our realtor partners, so I think it’s helped just bring more awareness that home ownership is a possibility,” she said.
Even if they’re on a fixed income, buyers come to Myrtle Beach because it’s still affordable as far as home prices and taxes. But Davis says that there isn’t a lot of industry in the area, and as the local economy is heavily reliant on tourism, a lot of buyers are self-employed or have seasonal, commission-based income. That can be a challenge, both in terms of documenting income and having the required income history.
Davis has found the program to be useful in helping borrowers overcome challenges in her market, and has been using Home Possible since it was announced in 2014.
“I love it for a lot of reasons. One is, the pricing is competitive. Having reduced mortgage insurance, that really is appealing to a lot of clients to keep their payment lower, and also help with down payment,” Davis said.
The program is also helpful to renters, and is a way to give them a path to home ownership in a place where the rental market is very high.
“It’s hard to save money, so they don’t have a lot of money for a down payment. But I would say a very large percentage [of renters] are able to purchase a home and go down in their monthly payment—pay less than they would in rent, or at least the same amount—and they’re able to build some wealth and really get a head start on things. So that’s really, for those people that are renting, it’s been a really, really nice product to offer.”
Guild specializes in developing unique pilot programs and niche products to help deliver the promise of home in every neighborhood and community it serves.
“We are honored to work with Freddie Mac to meet a broad range of homebuyer needs, and thank Brandon, Erica and Nick for their outstanding work serving their communities,” said Mary Ann McGarry, president and CEO of Guild Mortgage.
This year’s RISE winners represent 26 national and local mortgage lenders, as well as their loan originators who are committed to making responsible and sustainable homeownership a reality.