Chief in bullish mood ahead of association’s first in-person gathering since pandemic
No prizes for guessing the only time in its 48-year history that the National Association of Mortgage Brokers (NAMB) failed to hold a live, in-person event.
The association, which regards itself as the “voice of the mortgage industry” arguably lost a few decibels last year, when it was forced to hold a virtual event for the first time since its inception in 1973.
For NAMB president Kimber White (pictured), getting this year’s in-person event off the starting block was of paramount importance.
“I think everyone is zoomed out - everyone wants a live event!” he laughed. “People are ready to get back to face-to-face and we’re ready to get person-to- person and see other industry peers. I think that’s the biggest thing this year.”
Bursting with enthusiasm, as though freed from the constraints of the COVID straight-jacket, White was aware of the irony, remarking that “one of the best mortgage years” in history also happened to be the one that saw him lead the organization from behind closed doors while the nation grappled with the pandemic.
“We’re going all out for business and the consumer - that is our theme this year. There’s something for everyone, and everyone will walk away with a great experience,” he said in eager anticipation.
During the four-day event next month, up to 2,000 mortgage professionals and more than 130 vendors will be able to engage in breakout sessions on issues as varied as affordable housing, reverse mortgages, and on how to help first-time buyers and self-employed borrowers.
White’s successor, Linda McCoy, who will be taking over as president prior to the event, will also be debating women’s empowerment in the industry.
Among the keynote speakers will be industry veteran and president of Finance of America Mortgage, Bill Dallas, and Glenn Stearns, founder/CEO of Kind Lending and star of the TV show, Undercover Billionaire.
One new development will be ‘Worker Blueprint’, a program NAMB will be rolling out exclusively to educate borrowers on how to start their own business.
White said: “We have to work with people that are just getting back to work; that have different income brackets, like the self-employed.
“We have to ensure that people have the tools to run a business, and that they have all the products they need. We have to make sure that we help our buyers to the best of our ability - that’s what our trade show’s about.”
White said this year’s NAMB National 2021 would reflect the changes now happening in the housing market, particularly regarding the shift from refinance to purchase loans.
“In that purchase market, you have to learn how to compete. You have to make sure that your toolbox is not just about 20% down standard loans.
“You have to learn about affordable housing, FHA, alternative products, bank statement loans for the self-employed borrower and how to get these people into these homes.
“NAMB is really about taking care of a mortgage broker and loan originator,” he concluded.
NAMB National 2021 will be held October 8-11 at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas.