April 2016

Yadkin Mortgage: Lending Leadership with a Formula for Success

Author: Kitty Bartell | Photographer: JOHN BRACKETT

Sam McGowan III, Jacqueline Alcock, Edward Brown, Melissa Cooke, Bob Cummins

Born in Liverpool, England in 1734, Robert Morris, Jr. helped finance the American Revolution, signed the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution (one of only two who signed all three), was one of Pennsylvania’s first two senators, spent time in debtor’s prison for bad real estate investments, was the U.S. Superintendent of Finance, and at one time was considered the most powerful man in America, second only to George Washington. Morris is also credited with submitting the first proposal for a national funding plan (think lending institution), is considered to be one of the founders of the U.S. financial system, establishing banks at the epicenter of communities, and was credited with being the first to use the dollar sign ($) as we know it today, on official documents.

Understandably, Morris was a strong proponent of community banking, and would be encouraged, in the face of today’s modern banking generation, where only the numbers tell the story and automated interactions rule, that Yadkin Mortgage, a division of Yadkin Bank, a full-service chartered community bank, is still operating with a people-centric approach, upholding the premises put forth in the original writings of this financial founding father.

Ed Brown, South Carolina regional manager for Yadkin Mortgage, is a bit of a financial founding father himself, having been a part of the start-up of two of Hilton Head Island’s bona fide community banks. “I’ve been with big banks and I’ve been with community banks. I love community banking, because it’s truly about the community,” Brown said.

Yadkin Mortgage was the perfect fit for Brown, where his belief that establishing a reputation as a trust-worthy community bank begins with putting people in homes via mortgage lending is solidly supported. “Both companies were built on the premise of building a mortgage company first and building a base for banking relationships. Mortgages are a great way to start that relationship. It’s a touch-and-feel relationship. Then when you open the bank, it’s a lot easier to expland those relationships with the bank.

“Our goal is to be the best community bank in the two Carolinas,” Brown said of the Raleigh, North Carolina-based Yadkin Bank. Founded 45 years ago in Statesville, North Carolina, growth of the company has been paced to keep up with the needs of their customers, while maintaining the idea that there is nothing more informative or necessary than one-on-one interactions with clients, whether at the retail branch or in one of their mortgage lending offices.

“As we’ve grown, we’ve maintained the culture, and that’s not easy to do,” Brown said, particularly in the era of TRID. The TILA RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule – a.k.a. TRID – is a federal law that took effect in October of 2015, and is intended to protect the consumer during the process of purchasing real property with full disclosure about the mortgage loan. However, Brown believes there has never been a better time to work with a community bank like Yadkin, because when the loan disclosures are put in the hands of the borrowers, they are going to need personal guidance through those choppy waters. “Bankers and lenders were trained on TRID. The real estate community offered training to their agents. Attorneys got some training. However, nobody has trained the consumer, and this was all for the consumer’s benefit. It is more confusing than it has ever been,” Brown said.

“We take the time to explain things,” he continued. “We are one of the few lenders who attend the closings. I go because I want to thank them for their business; I want to be there to answer any questions about the documentation; and if there are any questions, I’m their advocate at the table.
“Products are our strength. We think outside the box and this is one of the big reasons why we decided to join Yadkin,” Brown said. “Every community is different, and our bank needs to think outside the box because the needs are different.” With a strong suite of lending products, Yadkin Mortgage has the flexibility to offer many traditional loan products, including conventional and reverse mortgages, construction loans, lot financing, FHA, USDA, and VA loans.

However, what makes Yadkin Mortgage a genuine community bank is its ability to do what Brown calls character loans. “We have portfolio loans. We sit down and talk and we come to know the person is going to be able pay. We learn their backgrounds; often there’s something in their history that was unavoidable. We determine if extenuating circumstances were the culprit, and that it was not credit mismanagement. The recession is one example. It affected jobs; it affected property values; it affected the ability to repair that which was out of their control. These are not things you can underwrite. We look at everything, and based on our recommendation, in conjunction with management, we do those loans and put them in our portfolio. It’s something your regular lender chooses not to do. It’s the ability to do the character loan and help people out. It’s the biggest asset we have. In this community, that kind of word-of-mouth spreads quickly.

“I’ve been in this business for 40 years, and I love it,” Brown said. “I don’t care if it’s the first- time home buyer or a person who has bought a dozen homes; that’s not the end of the relationship. That’s the beginning. They’re going to be paying their mortgage each month to Yadkin Bank. And every month, I want them to think fondly of their experience, and of me, and Yadkin Bank; that’s what I really enjoy about it.” Envisioned as the foundations of America were being laid, community banking is alive and well on Hilton Head Island, thanks to Ed Brown and Yadkin Mortgage.

Yadkin Mortgage is located at 1040 William Hilton Parkway, Suite 104, Hilton Head Island. For more information, please call (843) 785-2880 or visit yadkinbank.com.

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