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Moody’s reaffirms ‘above-average’ quality rating for reverse mortgage servicer Celink

Bond credit-rating organization Moody’s Investors Service has reaffirmed its “above-average” rating for the reverse mortgage servicing performance of Celink, which is the current holder of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)’s Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) servicing contract and is a HECM subservicer for several major lenders.

The Moody’s assessment of “SQ2” is based on Celink’s “above-average” servicing abilities and “average” servicing stability. The SQ represents Moody’s view of a servicer’s ability to prevent or mitigate asset-pool losses across changing markets. The assessment scale ranges from SQ1 (strong) to SQ5 (weak).

“Celink has been reviewed by Moody’s since 2016; initially receiving a SQ2- rating, which was upgraded to SQ2 in 2021, and has remained consistently at that level since,” Celink noted in its announcement about the rating. “Moody’s highlighted Celink’s strong performance in foreclosure, REO, and HUD claims management.”

The “above-average” determination applies to loan administration, call-center performance, annual occupancy verifications and maturity event monitoring, the company explained.

Moody’s also appraised the investment activity of the company in its platform, noting that Celink continues to make investments in “borrower experience and portfolio performance via Celink’s Borrower Portal and IVR system.”

Celink CEO Marion McDougall welcomed the updated assessment from Moody’s.

“At Celink, we have always, and will continue to, focus on doing what’s best for our clients, their borrowers, and the reverse mortgage program as a whole,” McDougall said. “Moody’s rating is confirmation that our emphasis on continuous improvement ensures the ongoing quality of our service and the supportive technology we’ve built to achieve our mission.”

In 2023, Celink renewed subservicing deals with major reverse mortgage lenders including Finance of America and Mutual of Omaha Mortgage. It also added Altisource to help manage its HECM portfolio.

Celink assumed control of the HECM servicing contract with HUD in late 2022.

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