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Top LO Tim Potempa joins E Mortgage Capital

Top U.S. loan officer Timothy Potempa has departed Dallas-based multichannel lender OneTrust Home Loans to join E Mortgage Capital, bringing his team of about 40 people and more than $300 million in annual production to the company headquartered in California. 

“I’ve been in the industry since I was 18, so this year will be 22 years, and I’ve only been in five companies,” Potempa said in an interview. “The transition just became along the lines of the team’s ability to have a product suite and technology.” 

According to Scotsman Guide, Potempa was the No. 7 loan officer in the country last year with a mortgage production volume of $326.5 million. His portfolio is concentrated on purchase loans (98% of the total volume in 2023) for first-time homebuyers. Potempa mainly focuses on the government lending space, which represents 60% of his total volume, he said. 

Potempa had a joint venture with OneTrust from March 2022 to March 2024. But according to him, the firm has invested in new construction, land, and condominiums in a challenging mortgage market. 

A representative at OneTrust declined to comment on Potempa’s departure. 

OneTrust has had some recent leadership changes. In February, it announced the hiring of James Hecht, former head of production and executive vice president for national retail lending at Newrez, as its CEO. Co-founders Josh Erskine and Shane Erskine pivoted to the respective roles of CEO and president at Warp Speed Holdings

Potempa brought his team of 38 professionals — including processors, business development staff, support staff and about 15 loan officers — to E Mortgage on March 25. He expects the group to close about $400 million in mortgages this year, representing about 15% of the company’s total. 

“The beginning of the year started a little slower, and that’s just because we’re transitioning to a new company,” Potempa said. “The goal is $400 million this year and then $500 million for next year.” 

E Mortgage charges Potempa’s team an upfront fee of $595 per funded loan, and he’s responsible for marketing, lead generation and other costs. Migrating to the new company will allow him to explore the wholesale side of the industry for the first time. 

Before OneTrust, he worked at Wells Fargo, Nova Home Loans and Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp

“With retail, you’re under a mortgage banker; you know the product set because you’re all in-house,” he said. “In wholesale, you can shop and sell the loan to a multitude of investors. Right now, we have 200 different investors.” 

Regarding the macro landscape, Potempa said that higher mortgage rates and elevated costs related to homeownership are impacting affordability. On Wednesday, his team’s 30-year rate on a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loan for borrowers with no points and a 660 credit score was 6.25%, while conventional mortgages were at a 6.75% rate. 

In this context, borrowers getting mortgages are “somebody in their mid-30s who has been saving, or move-up buyers for work, divorce or whatever reason,” Potempa said. His team is “still getting 300 to 400 leads a day from people raising their hands wanting to inquire about buying a house,” he added. 

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