Magazine article American Banker

American Residential Opens Inner-City Branch in San Diego

Magazine article American Banker

American Residential Opens Inner-City Branch in San Diego

Article excerpt

American Residential Mortgage Corp. has opened the first of several inner-city branches that it is planning as part of a bid to increase its lending to minorities across the country, the company announced.

La Jolla, Calif.-based American Residential said the opening of the branch last Friday in San Diego was the first move in its "fair lending initiative," which is designed to underscore its commitment to minority borrowers. Six other branches are planned.

American Residential is pleased to take a leading role" in helping minorities to own homes," said John Robbins, American Residential's chief executive, at the branch's opening ceremony.

The office has been set up as a completely community-based operation and will recruit its staff of about 10 from the neighborhood it serves.

Mr. Robbins, said the idea was to create an environment in which minorities can feel comfortable.

"We're down there to be part of that community - to participate and be a good citizen, not just to make loans," he said.

Mortgage bankers have increasingly been adopting the philosophy that they can do well by doing good.

Mr. Robbins cited projections by the Mortgage Bankers Association of America that 40% of all loan originations in the next decade will come from minority applicants.

He said that until now, little attempt had been made to market mortgages to minorities or to create lending office environments "tailored to minority audiences."

The office has been operating with a skeleton staff for about a month. …

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