Commonwealth Bank, a thrift that has been trying to become more bank-like, said Friday that it was selling off its five loan production offices and would outsource the servicing of its home mortgage portfolio.
The subsidiary of $1.9 billion-asset Commonwealth Bancorp in Norristown said it had agreed to sell its ComNet Mortgage Services, which operates the loan production offices, in Pennsylvania and Maryland, to American Home Mortgage Holdings Inc. of Melville, N.Y. The deal, which requires regulatory approval, is expected to close in the first quarter.
The bank said it will continue to offer mortgage loans and services through its 60 branches. It will record a one-time pretax charge of $2 million to $2.5 million in the first quarter to reflect expenses associated with the sale and outsourcing.
This transaction will enable Commonwealth to better focus its resources on these higher-margin business lines, resulting in more stable returns and higher-quality growth over time, said Charles H. Meacham, chairman and chief executive officer.