First American and Mountain Pacific Mortgage to Increase Homeownership Opportunities in Under-served Phoenix Communities
February 17, 2005
PHOENIX, /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The First American Corporation (NYSE: FAF) and Mountain Pacific Mortgage Company today announced the formation of a strategic alliance designed to substantially expand homeownership opportunities for families in the under-served Latino and low- to moderate-income communities of greater Phoenix. Under a pilot program, which pairs First American's expertise in title insurance and related settlement services with Mountain Pacific's residential lending capabilities, new homebuyers will benefit from educational resources, streamlined loan application processes and a single-price closing package that simplifies and reduces upfront home buying costs.
"This is a tremendous partnership for First American and a real opportunity to potentially help create tens of thousands of new homeowners," said Oli Rodriguez, Arizona Emerging Markets director for First American. "Mountain Pacific shares our vision of building stronger communities by closing the minority homeownership gap and is providing the necessary resources to help achieve this goal in the Phoenix area. Many mortgage lenders talk about servicing emerging markets -- Mountain Pacific is taking action."
First American and Mountain Pacific will implement the program through First American Title Insurance Company offices in Maricopa and Pinal County, Ariz., and through Mountain Pacific's branch in Glendale, Ariz. Program components will focus on educating potential homebuyers on the steps necessary to buy a home and provide guidance to real estate professionals on how best to service diverse markets. These efforts, combined with a streamlined funding and closing process available to homebuyers who choose Mountain Pacific and First American, are intended to put homeownership within reach for more Americans and help protect buyers from predatory lenders or other questionable service providers.
"First American has demonstrated its commitment to expanding homeownership opportunities and proven itself a true partner to the community groups, lenders, homebuilders and real estate professionals who likewise understand the potential of the emerging markets," said Dan Harder, senior vice president of Mountain Pacific Mortgage. "Through our combined efforts, we will offer an unprecedented level of service to Arizona homebuyers and hope to replicate this innovative business model in other key markets across the Rocky Mountain and Southwestern states."
The First American/Mountain Pacific alliance will operate in conjunction with The First American Corporation's broader minority homeownership initiative, launched in October 2003 to promote home buying among African Americans, Asian Americans and Latinos. Key components of the initiative include the introduction of alternative credit-screening products, a targeted philanthropic giving program, a for-profit community investment program, an increased commitment to workforce and vendor diversity, and bundled and discounted closing services. The closing bundle is offered to eligible homebuyers in all Arizona counties at an average discount of approximately 25 percent. Discount eligibility is based on U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development income definitions. For more information, visit: www.emergingmarkets.firstam.com.
Source: First American