Yet recruitment remains laborious, which may call for more direct – yet appropriately discreet – contact, he suggested: “If I’m hiring a type of role, we know how to reach out, identify and engage with mortgage and real estate professionals so we can have that conversation. One great way to find a candidate – and it always has been – is to talk to somebody in that role. So whether they are qualified or not, they usually know two or three others in that role.”
Mortgage layoffs have been sizable
Virtually a who’s who of the mortgage industry has laid off sizable numbers of employees since the onset of inflation last year, as seen in a compilation by BeSmartee. Wells Fargo – one of the nation’s largest banks – began laying off people at its home lending section last year. Cuts announced at the end of the first quarter last year followed a 33% drop in its mortgage revenue amid higher interest rates. And who can forget the layoffs conducted via Zoom at Better.com? The total number of layoffs remains unclear, but known to be in the thousands of employees. NewRez LLC was ahead of the curve in the layoffs trend, cutting roughly 3% of its workforce after the acquisition of Caliber Homes in late 2021.
Continuing the trend, direct-to-consumer lender Owning Corp. cut nearly 200 jobs once it was acquired by Guaranteed Rate. Stearns Lending was alsopurchased by Guaranteed Rate, prompting the layoffs of nearly 350 workers in the early part of January 2021 after the acquiring firm opted to shed its third-party wholesale division. Most affected by the layoffs were mortgage specialists, mortgage consultants, underwriters and senior executives. Redfin, in turn, laid off more than 120 workers after its acquisition of Bay Equity Home Loans.
Mr. Cooper wasn’t immune from market shifts, prompting employee cuts. Also affected was Pennymac, which shed 236 workers in March and another 239 in July. All told, the company cut 474 jobs in the first half of 2022 alone. Tomo cut 44 jobs – representing a third of the small company’s total workforce – in May. USAA Bank reportedly shed more than 90 employees as potential homeowners wait on the sidelines for the market to shake out before pursuing purchases.
Several nonbank lenders has also followed the trend: