Magazine article American Banker

Countrywide's Balboa Unit Expands Lender Relationships

Magazine article American Banker

Countrywide's Balboa Unit Expands Lender Relationships

Article excerpt

Balboa Insurance Group, a subsidiary of Countrywide Credit Industries Inc., has agreed to provide insurance services to the customers of Fairbanks Capital Corp., a company that services bad home loans.

Through the agreement, which was announced last Tuesday, Irvine, Calif.-based Balboa is to supply Fairbanks with lender-placed insurance products, as well as many of the services that keeping track of its mortgage customers' insurance status requires.

Fairbanks Capital of Salt Lake City handles third-party subservicing of impaired-credit loans and special servicing of nonperforming loans for financial services clients such as mortgage finance companies, investment and commercial banks, and bond insurers.

Lender-placed insurance is used in both the mortgage and auto businesses "to the extent that a borrower can't get insurance," said Drew Gissinger, a managing director and the president of Balboa Insurance.

The California company specializes in various kinds of insurance products through financial institutions, including term life; accidental death and dismemberment; credit, homeowners, and renters coverages; and other products.

Mr. Gissinger said his company works with Wells Fargo & Co., Bank of America Corp., American Express Co., Citigroup Inc., and others. "We have partnerships of one form or another with almost all the major financial institutions," he said.

Balboa is well-positioned to help financial institution clients with insurance products and services, Mr. Gissinger said, because of its ownership by Countrywide, a Calabasas, Calif., mortgage lender.

"By the nature of our parent, we have a very thorough understanding of what our business partners do every day because we ourselves as an organization do it every day," Mr. Gissinger said.

Countrywide is also a client, Mr. Gissinger said -- and a pretty demanding one. …

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