Covering the mortgage-lending industry since 1985, Scotsman Guide Media publishes the separate, monthly Scotsman Guide Commercial Edition and Scotsman Guide Residential Edition — in addition to the tools on scotsmanguide.com — for mortgage origina…tors nationwide. Its mission is to be the leading…..Read More
>Athas Capital Group, Inc, a National Lender, Provides 100% Transparency and Invaluable Tools for the Mortgage Broker Community to Help Vet Who Truly is a LenderDecember 14, 2010
Athas Capital Group, Inc, a National Lender, Provides 100% Transparency and Invaluable Tools for the Mortgage Broker Community to Help Vet Who Truly is a Lender
>May the real lenders step forward please.
The number one question I get asked by a new mortgage broker is, are you a direct lender? This is an intrinsically important question that is asked, and rightfully so in this climate, and my answer is always yes. The problem that Mortgage Brokers face in this questionable climate is that many hear the same answer from others that turn out not to be direct lenders. The intent of this article is to provide our mortgage community with a guide, if you will, as how to mitigate and truly discern if the entity you are speaking to is truly a REAL lender.
>Athas Capital Group Adopts No Up Front Lender Fee Policy
Link to news article below:
YAHOO NEWS ARTICLE
Tue Feb 23, 2:00 am ET
Bold move by forward thinking company allows for fast-tracking quality submissions
(Vocus) February 23, 2010 — Balance.In the world of direct commercial lenders success depends on being able to strike the right balance between risk and reward. Too much of either leaves you exposed to ruin. Getting it right is what separates growing, vibrant companies from the majority of business’ that cannot survive in good economic times, let alone in a difficult business environment. One company that has had success in striking this balance is nationwide commercial lender Athas Capital Group located in Calabasas Hills, CA. Brian O’Shaughnessy, CEO of Athas Capital Group, knew that it was up to him to create this balance for ACG. One of the first challenges he faced was the question of whether or not to charge upfront fees. He knew most bridge lenders required a fee before underwriting a new deal. His inclination was to bypass this practice, so for the first six months ACG did not charge an upfront fee. The hope was ACG would see higher quality deals, the effect was exact the opposite. So Athas Capital Group began charging a nominal fee to discourage submission of loans that had no real hope of being funded.
“When we first opened our doors we wanted to be a different kind of lender. So we made the decision to take on deals without charging any fee upfront” said Brian O’Shaughnessy, CEO of Athas Capital Group. “ It took about six months to realize that by not charging an upfront lender fee, we were being inundated with poor quality loans.” he continued “It just became untenable to continue processing files only to find out that key components of the deals were not as represented”. The switch to having an upfront fee was brought about to help ensure that, at the very least, the client believed in the deal being completed. Brian never gave up on the idea that one day Athas Capital Group would return to his original vision. That day has come.
Mr. O’Shaughnessy feels the time is right to try a no upfront lender fee policy again. “It has always been my goal to reinstitute this policy at some point. Some people had a problem sending Athas Capital Group money with no guarantee that the loan would fund and I’m sure we missed out on a few great deals, but we could not continue down the path we were going.” O’Shaughnessy said. So what’s changed over the past 18 months? Athas Capital Group’s CEO explains “there is a real sense, in our market, that while it has been tough sledding for the past couple of years the brokers that are still in the business are the real professionals that clients can rely on for good advice.” says O’Shaughnessy “This is a vital component in getting back to good lending practices.” Will this be a permanent move on the part of ACG? Brian says “Well, of course, we all want this to be the policy going forward, but, in the end, it will come down to whether or not brokers can deliver good quality submissions free of hidden surprises.” he continues, “We will also have to do our part upfront to address any potential challenges before we move too far along in the process. I firmly believe that a strong partnership of trust between the broker, borrower, and ACG is the only way we can ensure our mutual success.”
Athas Capital Group, Inc. was founded on the basis of providing large scale product availability with a boutique style service platform to give our clients endless opportunity. The company was founded by Brian O’Shaughnessy who brings with him nearly 20 years of experience in all facets of real estate lending. With him, Brian brings Officers, key Management, Operational staff, and a Sales team that in most cases have served with him for 5 years or more and in specific cases nearly 15 years. Athas Capital’s founder realizes, through over 15 years of operating as a Direct Lender, that relationships and service are the foundation of our continued success.
>Banks abandoning niche market of trophy homes leaving some in dire straights
Calabasas Hills, CA (PRWEB) January 23, 2010 — As sales prices of homes across the United States have continued to decline, newspapers, radio, and television news outlets offer daily reminders of the great deals available, if an individual could only find financing. One story people probably won’t see is the effects of banks tightening lending guidelines on the luxury homeowner. Does this mean these individuals aren’t feeling the credit crunch? Do they exist in an economic bubble? The truth is, these individuals are discovering financing for these beautiful homes next to impossible to find.
California trophy home
“The last few trophy home deals we have taken to market have been oversubscribed in a matter of hours. Our investor base has a healthy appetite for first trust deeds collateralized by trophy homes “said Alim Kassam. “People have to understand, our business model is based on the partnerships we build with mortgage brokers and realtors. So we are acutely aware of the issues their clients are most concerned with. We are dealing with trophy homes and these homes represent the dreams the homeowners have worked so hard for,” said Brian O’Shaughnessy, CEO of Athas Capital Group, a leader in providing funding for the luxury home market. “Now, when they need to access capital they find the doors of the banks they have done business with for years closed to them” said O’Shaughnessy. A few years ago, these challenges were easily overcome with stated loans or alternate document loans. Today, those options don’t exist for most borrowers. “The steep decline in sales volume for luxury homes over the last year has caused many conventional lenders to exit the luxury home financing market.” Said Craig Grella, President of Cornerstone Funding Services in Seattle, WA, “The ones which remain have added many barriers to funding, including increased documentation requirements, longer underwriting periods, and a general unwillingness to finance properties over a certain dollar value.” added Grella.
O’Shaughnessy quickly recognized an underserved market and went to work finding a solution. One of the first things Mr. O’Shaughnessy did was enlist Alim Kassam, President of Athas Capital Group, to gauge investor interest in funding trophy homes. “Alim has been instrumental in the rapid growth we’ve experienced in this specialized segment of our market” O’Shaughnessy said. Finding investors has been an embarrassment of riches for the duo. “The last few trophy home deals we have taken to market have been oversubscribed in a matter of hours. Our investor base has a healthy appetite for first trust deeds collateralized by trophy homes “said Alim Kassam. What does the immediate future hold for this type of niche investment? Mr. Kassam states “These types of investments offer the same conservative LTV’s as our traditional bridge loans and the guarantors are borrowers with strong credit scores , pristine mortgage histories, and substantial net worth’s. We cannot source enough of this product to satiate the demands of our private capital base.”
A person could be excused for thinking funding these luxury homes is nothing more than a walk in the park. Mr. O’Shaughnessy belts out a boisterous laugh “I’ve been underwriting mortgages, residential and commercial, for more than 20 years. We are going to docs on two trophy homes this week, one for $4 million and another for $1.5 million. The time it took, from start to finish, to complete these loans could be measured with a calendar for one and a clock for the other. I defy anyone to look at these deals and say, with any certainty, which is which. I take a great deal of pride in knowing that we had both the expertise and persistence to fund both of these loans”.
Athas Capital Group, Inc. was founded on the basis of providing large scale product availability with a boutique style service platform to give our clients endless opportunity but at no expense for service. The company was founded by Brian O’Shaughnessy who brings with him nearly 20 years of experience in all facets of real estate lending. With him, Brian brings Officers, key Management, Operational staff, and a Sales team that in most cases have served with him for 5 years or more and in specific cases nearly 15 years. Athas Capital’s founder realizes, through over 15 years of operating as a Direct Lender, that relationships and service are the foundation of our continued success.
For more information or to schedule an interview with a company representative, please contact Kevin O’Shaughnessy at our office 877.877.1477 x777.