Here’s a first for LendingLife readers: The New York State Department of Financial Services last month issued a cease and desist order against Long Island, New York-based mortgage banker Franklin First Financial.
The list of no-no’s at the company is long: inaccurate balance sheets, substantial lead generation payments to employees in an effort to dodge LO comp restrictions, transferring of funds to private businesses, using company money for personal expenses, doing business with unlicensed MLOs.
Last month the company closed down, fired everyone and shut its webpage down.
According to data provided to HousingWire from iEmergent, Franklin First was the 535th largest mortgage lender (466th by refi) by purchase. In 2017, they originated nearly $300 million in mortgage, with the average loan size being around $358,000.
The New York regulators say all of this is grounds to revoke its mortgage license. The investigation is ongoing.
Under the terms, First Franklin can continue to pay fair expenses, but must put borrower incomings into escrow and is forbidden from destroying, or failing to keep up with, its financial records.