First Union Corp. is searching for a new leader for its home equity division.

First Union Home Equity Bank, Charlotte, N.C., has been without a president since late March, when Gregory M. Hining stepped down unexpectedly after two and a half years, saying he wanted a change in lifestyle.

The bank did not issue a release at that time, although the resignation was reported later in a newsletter, Home Equity News.

"Ideally, we're looking for someone with knowledge of the industry who is accustomed to running a large, nationwide company," said James E. Maynor, the acting president of the home equity unit. The bank is considering candidates both within and outside the company, said Mr. Maynor, who is also president and chief executive of First Union Mortgage Corp.

Since Mr. Hining's departure, First Union Home Equity Bank has continued business as usual.

The subsidiary makes home equity, refinance, and debt consolidation loans to customers with good to mediocre credit through 118 branches in 33 states. The bulk of the business comes through third-party referrals from remodelers, builders, and brokers, Mr. Maynor said.

Loans made to A borrowers, or those with the best credit, are kept on portfolio. First Union holds $4 billion in such loans.

Loans made to customers with less pristine credit are securitized, Mr. Maynor said. Last year, First Union Home Equity securitized $600 million such loans.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.