PenFed Plans Major Expansion Of Realty Business

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ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Pentagon FCU, which has emerged as one of the leading mortgage lenders in the Washington, D.C., market, said it plans to open as many as ten new offices of its wholly owned PenFed Realty CUSO.

At least six of the offices will open in greater Washington, which is adding tens of thousands of military personal under the Defense Department’s base restructuring. Another four are slated for Texas. The Washington-area offices are planned for Fort Belvoir and Woodbridge, Va., and Fort Meade, Md., by year-end, and in suburban D.C.’s McLean, Alexandria, Va., and Bethesda, Md., by the end of next year, in addition to as many as five new offices in Texas.

Frank Pollack, president of Pentagon FCU, said the credit union has slowed growth over the past year because of worries about a falling net worth ratio, but "it's time for us to start growing again." He said the PenFed Realty CUSO has been "good for us and good for our members" and is expected to provide the credit union with a steday flow of real estate transactions.

PenFed Realty, which was launched in 2006, now has five offices, about 150 exclusive agents and 10 in-house employees. The CUSO’s realty services are open to non-members as well as members of the $15 billion credit union.

PenFed Realty offers customers several benefits, including payment of most closing costs if the customer borrows from the credit union parent, and payment of settlement fees if they use the credit union’s other CUSO, PenFed Title, as their title company. Credit union members who sell their homes through PenFed Realty also get a 1% discount on real estate commissions, while those who buy homes through the CUSO get a rebate at settlement for 1% of the price.

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