Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. - Wholesale - Agency, FHA, Jumbo, Rural
Update - 2009-09-08: Platinum Community Bank was shut down by regulators on 2009-09-04. The Office of Thrift Supervision has seized the Rolling Meadows, IL based bank owned by Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Co. and appointed the FDIC receiver. According to one report, the closure will cost the FDIC's insurance fund $114.3 million.
MB Financial Bank in Chicago took over the management and processing of government-paid direct deposit accounts, but the remainder of the bank's $346 million in assets -- which the report notes included loans, foreclosed homes and other revenue-generators" -- will be sold off at a later date. Loan customers were told to make payments as normal "until instructed otherwise."
The Ocala, FL branch of Platinum Community Bank was located in the headquarters of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker. Financial reports on file with regulators indicate the bank had been originating about $3.2 million per month in residential mortgage loans.
Update - 2009-09-02: More troubles for the now defunct Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Co. have arisen as a result of one man's alleged fraud. National Mortgage News today reported former Taylor, Bean & Whitaker employee Victor Cedeno "is still being sought by authorities" and "faces charges he allegedly stole more than $1.6 million from the company by depositing the funds into accounts he controlled at Navy FCU of Virginia."
Cedeno was a Loss Mitigation Negotiator in the company's Loan Resolution Management Department who worked to resolve short sale losses. According to the complaint, Cedeno is accused of having embezzled a total of $1,608,640.34 in funds from short sales of properties owned by Taylor, Bean & Whitaker by redirecting funds and modifying internal reports to disguise the activity.
As relayed in the testimony of U.S. Secret Service Agent Charles Johnsten in the complaint, this latest investigation was triggered on 2009-08-12 when Navy FCU reported suspicious activity in an account named "Tailor Bean W." for which Cedeno was the sole signatory. The credit union's Orlando branch was alerted when a check issued to "Taylor Bean & Whitaker" was deposited in the account and Cedeno attempted to obtain a cashier's check in the amount of $800,000.00.
Update - 2009-08-25: Despite having 99 pages of listed creditors, the 2009-08-24 bankruptcy filing for Taylor, Bean & Whitaker is incomplete. The missing required schedules and statements, including a Statement of Financial Affairs, are due to be filed by 2009-12-22. An estimated 1,000 to 5,000 creditors are owed in excess of $1 billion. Heading a list of the company's top 20 unsecured creditors is Deutsche Bank with a "disputed" claim of $42 million.
Filed along with the voluntary petition is a Case Management Summary which lays out in great detail the "perfect storm of events" that led to the company's sudden shutdown on 2009-08-05. It references "potentially inappropriate communications" that may have occurred between employees of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker and Colonial Bank regarding "the accounting treatment for REO on TBW's balance sheet." In the summary, CEO Paul Allen is also mentioned as having given a statement in a 2009-06-06 letter that Ginnie Mae construed had "somehow been misleading" and was "not reviewed by TBW's counsel, Deloitte, or TBW's Chairman."
Alongside with the bankruptcy, a lawsuit was filed on 2009-08-24 requesting class action status and demands for relief under the Workers Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act on behalf of the approximately 2,000 employees who were laid off on 2009-08-05.
Update - 2009-08-24: Reports are coming in that Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection. The company is citing the failure of Colonial Bank as the cause of its problems, and plans to appeal terminations of its seller-servicer agreement with Ginnie Mae and revocation of FHA approval later this month. From MarketWatch:
Neil Luria, newly appointed Chief Restructuring Officer, is quoted as having said "This is a very complicated business, and the speed of its collapse has been stunning."
The bankruptcy filing is not yet available via the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system. We will post a copy of it here when it does.
Update - 2009-08-11: WSJ has reported that a BK filing for Taylor, Bean & Whitaker is imminent. The information stems from a motion filed 2009-08-06 in a civil case being heard in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia. The filing informed the court that "counsel for TBW has received word that a bankruptcy filing is imminent," and request the Court grant a stay on proceedings in anticipation of the filing of a "Suggestion of Bankruptcy." On 2009-08-07, the Court granted the motion.
Taylor, Bean & Whitaker is also facing a class action lawsuit brought by Sivyer, Barlow & Watson, PA on behalf of employees under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act that was filed 2009-08-10. In a press release the same day, Jack Raisner of NY firm Outten & Golden LLP said "The Taylor Bean flip-flop is a dramatic instance of what we call 'pump-and-dump'. Employers get the hopes and spirits of employees up in bad times by telling them not to worry - they won't be fired. The next thing you know, the employer is frog-marching the same employees out the door."
In the meantime, notices have been posted for borrowers whose loans are/were being serviced by Taylor, Bean & Whitaker. The U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) has the following "Consumer Guidance" info posted on their web site for those with FHA loans (click link to see the full release, or view cached):
Q: I have a loan with Taylor, Bean and Whitaker and I heard they are closed. Who will be my new lender?A: Ginnie Mae's master sub servicer, Bank of America, has taken over servicing of the TBW portfolio. You will receive a letter from BAC Home Loans Servicing, LP (a Bank of America subsidiary), confirming this transfer and welcoming you as a valued customer within two weeks of your loan being added to their systems.Q: My loan is currently being serviced by TBW. Where do I send my payment?A: You should continue making your mortgage payment at its normally scheduled time. However, your payment should now be sent to:
Borrowers with non-FHA loans still being serviced by Taylor, Bean & Whitaker will find that their online and phone payment options are now restricted. The following notice (view cached) appears on the web site for existing customers:
Original Listing - 2009-08-05: We are just getting word that Lee Farkas has given up attempting to save what's left of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker. In an email sent out this morning (unconfirmed) by Lee:
This is a BREAKING story. We will update during the day. Thousands of page views per hour are following the minute-by-minute details on our forum. Click HERE to follow the forum starting at this mornings postings.
One unidentified Title Company stated "The federal authorities have closed the Florida offices of Taylor, Bean, Whitaker Mortgage Corporation, which also operates under a D/B/A as First Mortgage Options Corp.
In a TB&W Press Release out moments ago:
We will add to this story as news comes in.
Original Ailing/Watch Listing - 2009-08-04: Taylor, Bean & Whitaker has been suspended from originating or underwriting FHA loans according to a press release by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) today. Effective immediately, the temporary suspension will remain in force "pending the completion of an investigation by HUD's Office of Inspector General, an ongoing review by the Department's Office of Housing, and any legal proceedings that may ensue."
The Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA or "Ginnie Mae") has also terminated Taylor, Bean & Whitaker as an issuer of government-back mortgage securities and is taking over the company's servicing portfolio of nearly $25 billion. From FHA's press release:
"FHA and Ginnie Mae are imposing these actions because TBW failed to submit a required annual financial report and misrepresented that there were no unresolved issues with its independent auditor even though the auditor ceased its financial examination after discovering certain irregular transactions that raised concerns of fraud. FHA's suspension is also based on TBW's failure to disclose, and its false certifications concealing, that it was the subject of two examinations into its business practices in the past year."
Speaking specifically on the "examinations into its business practices," FHA Commissioner David Stevens said the Agency was also "troubled that the Company not only failed to disclose it was a target of a multi-state examination and a separate action by the Commonwealth of Kentucky, but then falsely certified that it had not been sanctioned by any state."
Along with the suspension from doing business with FHA and termination of its seller/servicer agreement with Ginnie Mae, two of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker's top executives were given notices of proposed debarment from participation in federal programs. Chief Executive Officer, Paul R. Allen, and President, Ray Bowman respectively are alleged to have 1) submitted "false and/or misleading information to Ginnie Mae regarding TBW's delay in submitting its audited financial reports for [the] fiscal year ending on March 31, 2009," and 2) submitted "two false certifications to HUD" on the company's Yearly Verification Report. Both Allen and Bowman, as well as the company, have 30 days to file an appeal against the Agency's actions.
GNMA's President Joseph Murin issued a statement assuring a "seamless transition" to a new servicer for Taylor, Bean & Whitaker customers with existing loans.
The Wall Street Journal reported Chairman Lee Farkas "said in response to questions that he was unaware of the FHA action." Farkas also claimed to have no knowledge as to the nature of documents removed under federal warrant from the company's headquarters in Ocala, FL on 2009-08-03.
One thing Farkas can't plead ignorance to is the very real and devastating impact this will have on the thousands of borrowers, brokers and correspondent lenders who have very suddenly and abruptly found themselves in search of a new FHA-approved lender for their loans.
Update - 2009-08-03:Earlier today we reported that Colonial Bank had been raided by the Feds. The Orlando Sentinel confirmed agents with the U.S. Treasury's TARP unit and the FBI were "executing warrants both at the Colonial office on East Pine Street and at a location in Ocala." Turns out that location in Ocala was none other than the headquarters of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker as caught on film by a reporter from the Star-Banner.
Details about the nature of the warrants were not given. We continue to watch closely for stories on this new development and will post updates as they occur. Feel free to join in the ongoing discussion about Taylor, Bean & Whitaker on our forums or post your comments by clicking on the links below.
Update - 2009-07-31: It's official: the deal's off. Colonial announced today that the agreement with the investment group lead by Taylor, Bean & Whitaker had been terminated. This was to have been the closing date for that arrangement, and both Colonial and TB&W have mutually withdrawn with the following statement:
"Since the regulatory approval process with the OTS remained pending as of July 31, 2009 and all of the conditions necessary for closing did not occur as of that date, and since there could be no assurance that the required regulatory approvals or other conditions would be satisfied in the future, both Colonial and TBW elected on July 31, 2009 to mutually terminate the stock purchase agreement."
Update - 2009-06-23: Taylor, Bean & Whitaker today agreed to pay $9 million to 14 states as reported on Boston's WXII12.com. The agreement, posted on the Massachusetts Dept. of Banking site here, applies to "nontraditional" loans made in 2006 and extends to the states the following provisions (added emphasis ours):
"This agreement will result in a detailed review of TBW's nontraditional loan exceptions, the adoption of the federal loan modification program to assist struggling homeowners, and the payment of $9 million to assist the states in their oversight of mortgage origination practices."
Bank Examiners stated "Alleged practices included the multiple submissions of loan applications by third-party originators through automated underwriting programs resulting in altered income and asset information for prospective borrowers in order to qualify applicants for mortgage loans."
States involved include AZ, FL, GA, ID, IL, LA, MD, MA, MS, NJ, NC, PA, VT and the District of Columbia. There is no indication at this time how or if this will affect the investment deal with warehouse lending bank Colonial Bancgroup (NYSE: CNB), who was "pushed off" the S&P SmallCap 400 Index last week as reported in the Birmingham News Journal.
Update - 2009-06-10: Taylor, Bean & Whitaker's deal with Colonial may not be such a sure thing afterall. Forbes today reported the FDIC and the Alabama State Banking Dept. have issued a Cease and Desist order against Colonial Bancgroup. Fitch Ratings had downgraded Colonial "deeper into junk status" the day before.
"Because of the order, the likelihood of Colonial BancGroup executing the investment deal may be "negatively impacted," Fitch said in a statement."
Reuters reported that Colonial told Analyst Kevin Fitzsimmons of Sandler O'Neill "the order does not affect an agreement with an investment group to invest in the company." Fitzsimmons said "what remains unclear... is what the announced C&D implies about regulators' willingness to approve the TBW-led injection and the related willingness of the U.S. Treasury to make the TARP/CPP investment in Colonial."
Update - 2009-05-26: On Friday, May 22, 2009 Colonial BancGroup announced the due diligence requirement of its agreement with Taylor, Bean & Whitaker had been satisfied. Also announced, a last minute change to the deal had been agreed upon by the parties giving the go-ahead for an Amended Agreement for the investment group to provide the necessary $300 million in capital that will enable the ailing bank to access $500 million in Federal TARP funds.
The Amended Agreement, laid out in an SEC 8-K filing dated 2009-05-26, would see an investment of $199.5 million from Taylor, Bean & Whitaker, combined with $100.5 million from other private investors, to purchase 600,000 shares of Colonial BancGroup -- all in Series A Preferred voting stock vs the prior combination of part-voting and part-non-voting shares as previously agreed. The deal is still subject to regulatory approval.
Along with the Amended Agreement, the 8-K filing lays out the list of other investors aligning with Taylor, Bean & Whitaker to rescue the warehouse bank. Participants include a number of other mortgage companies, including:
Update - 2009-03-31: What to do if your warehouse bank is in trouble? What else - buy it! Taylor Bean & Whitaker already had thrift status thru their purchase of Platinum Community Bancshares, and today EarthTimes reports Colonial BancGroup has entered into a definitive material agreement with a group of investors headed by Taylor Bean & Whitaker to inject $300 million into the ailing bank that ranks among the few warehouse lenders still standing.
The investment will result in a 75% ownership of Colonial's common stock for the group, subject to regulatory approval. Colonial would be converted from a bank to a thrift charter in the process according to an earlier report by BizJournal, and gain access to federal TARP monies that would help Taylor Bean & Whitaker "win federal clearance for a significant expansion of its deposit-gathering operations and provide it with a stable source of low-cost funding."
If approved it could be a "TARPtastic solution" to their funding problems!
Update - 2009-02-19: It has been rumored that Taylor, Bean & Whitaker has procured $900 million in additional warehouse lines-of-credit from Bank of America. A source we spoke with indicated the immediate affect of this has been notably improved funding turn times for correspondent business in recent weeks. It is not known if the additional funding facilities carry any restrictions against third-party originations (TPO) for conduit lenders doing business through that channel.
We were unable to reach a spokesperson for TB&W's Correspondent Division for comment. Stay tuned as we continue to monitor and watch for a "return to normal."
Original Posting - 2009-02-18: Ocala, FL based privately-owned non-depository lender is a well known FHLMC seller/servicer and "a Top 10 national wholesale mortgage lender". Taylor, Bean & Whitaker is the "Fifth largest Freddie Mac Securities issuer," and the "Fourth largest Ginnie Mae issuer" according to their web site.
As competitors have gone away and FHA loans gained increasing popularity, business has picked up considerably at Taylor, Bean & Whitaker (TB&W). Average monthly originations across all channels exceeded $1.8 billion during 2007, which has reportedly surged to $2.5 billion per month or more. Commentary in feedback from readers suggests they are inundated with files. That smells like good news, but it isn't all roses.
We first began looking at TB&W in March of 2008 when a tipster emailed with this question: "Have you heard anything about Taylor Bean & Whitaker and them running out of money? We've certainly seen an increase in time it takes to have loans purchased off our line, which could be an indicator that they are having a hard time getting their loans purchased..."
To get to the present requires a little more background. In January of 2008, we learned that Southwest Securities F.S.B., a large warehouse lender, had announced to clients that Countrywide and Indymac were being struck from their list of approved investors. It was no real surprise, given the problems both CW and IMB were facing at the time. But five months later, much to our surprise, we began to receive emails in regard to Taylor, Bean & Whitaker:
"Our warehouse bank (Southwest Securities) just called and advised us they will no longer be accepting loans to be sold to Taylor Bean & Whitaker...."
"Southwest Security is no longer allowing them and Gateway is only allowing one more as an exception pending review of the file."
That second tip brought the "banned-by" count to two. And, according to the source, "Gateway removed the exception." The loan had to be shopped to another investor. While we were digging for more info on why TB&W had been banned by these warehouse lenders, tips like this began rolling in:
"Taylor Bean is taking over 30 days to buy loans off warehouse lines and are not returning calls."
A few days later, a TB&W correspondent lender wrote, "The rep will not even call us back as well. Flagstar has cut off Taylor Bean from there list of approved lenders and so has National City Warehouse." We spoke with the sender, who asked to remain unnamed. The loans were underwritten and cleared-to-close by TB&W. No post-closing conditions were requested; there was no explanation offered for the delay in TB&W's purchase of the closed loans. Their company is no longer sending business to TB&W as a result.
Another TB&W correspondent that, due to loss of their own warehouse, has resorted to "table-funding" loans with TB&W, relayed this experience:
"last Wednesday TB&W gave [the closer] the okay to fund a couple of loans on Thursday and then on Thursday they hadn't funded. [The closer] was told there were "perceived" issues and then [the closer] had to make several phone calls and they finally relented and funded the loans."
Then in July, we received this tip which gave us even more cause for concern:
"I worked for them and I know for a fact that when correspondents send them loans for purchase TBW sells the loans to Freddie and others before they purchase the loans. This effectively extends their funding ability. That's why they are continuing in spite of losing large warehouse facilities last fall (commercial paper backed line with Lehman)."
In addition to the Lehman line, they also lost another credit facility when Citigroup's First Collateral Services imploded in January of 2008. According to our sources Taylor, Bean & Whitaker now has its primary warehouse facility through Colonial Bank, an AL state-chartered bank. National Mortgage News reported on 2009-02-14 that Colonial may be in trouble itself, needing to raise $300 million to obtain a capital injection of $550 million from the Fed. "Non-bank mortgage originators that depend on warehouse money are praying that the bank will receive TARP funding and that liquidity will not be an issue," the article said.
At the end of each month every month since July of 2008, we have received a barrage of emails and read the recurring discussions on our forums about funding delays with Taylor, Bean & Whitaker. Recently, we've seen title insurance companies begin issuing alerts to their agents about TB&W loans, including First American Title and Stewart Title Guaranty. Stewart issued the following alert regarding Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp on 2009-02-17:
"Effective immediately, Stewart requires funding by the above entity to be accomplished only by federally wired funds to your escrow account. You must confirm that the funds have been received (not just that the wire has been initiated) and unconditionally credited to your account prior to making any disbursements or releasing any documents."
Taylor, Bean & Whitaker made their own announcement on 2009-02-17 that they would no longer accept third-party originations of Agency and Jumbo loans that require mortgage insurance with a FICO below 740 - effectively capping wholesale non-FHA business at 80% loan-to-value. This follows in a long string of product eliminations and/or restrictions on broker and correspondent business that TB&W has issued over the past year, raising the minimum required FICO score for FHA loans to 600 included among those of late. With the "banned-by" count now up to five major warehouse lenders and both brokers and correspondents complaining of funding issues, we are Watching ever more closely to see what develops within TB&W's Correspondent and Broker wholesale channels.
Wow...Imagine..That! at 22:24 2009-02-19 said:what closing agent would ever fund a loan without verifying the wire was in the account? Just a thought..... Permalink
crazyyear09 at 15:31 2009-03-17 said:We have had loans with TBW since January that have not funded yet. TBW gives it's correspondent lenders absolutely NO communication. It is ridiculous! :twisted: Permalink
crazyyear09 at 08:40 2009-03-27 said:You have Cindy's name...I have a least 4 others. As of today, we will no longer do business with TBW! GREAT JOB LOSING CUSTOMERS!!! Permalink
2centsworth at 16:51 2009-03-29 said:Even with the banks TBW funds, they are late. They force the banks to fund their closings and then advance the money when they receive the proceeds from the loan sale. The problem is Colonial Bank has seen better days and they were TBW's cash cow. Now they have been forced to turn their originating banks into warehouse lenders. At this point they can't worry about violating agreements they have made. They are just trying to survive. Permalink
Riderup100 at 18:02 2009-06-03 said:Consider yourself warned. Do not waste your time doing businss with these clowns. I have had to work with a totally indifferent rep and a refinance process that has taken over 5 months to complete. We now get to the point where we're ready to draw docs only to find UW & Secondary do not speak, so now our new rate (which is lower than submitted and locked over 8 weeks ago) has to go back to an uw for clearance from an UW. I have had 3 loans with this company & would rather cut off body parts than ever do a loan with these tools again. Don't waste your time or potentially sacrifice your reputation. Go to ANY other lender. the low rates simply are not worth the littany of BS you must wade through. I wouldn't send my worst enemy to the company Permalink
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Important: This company is on our list of lending operations that have "imploded". However, please note that "imploded" is a somewhat subjective and does not necessarily mean operations are ceased permanently: it can mean bankruptcy filing, temporary but open-ended halting of major operations, or "firesale" acquisition. All information here is provisional, and may contain inaccuracies (especially newer information). If you are planning on doing business with this company or any other one listed on this site, you should inquire with them directly on whether they can still meet your needs. Many are still operating in some capacity.