Wells Fargo's (WFC) home-loan unit has sold a portfolio of reverse-mortgage servicing rights to Walter Investment Management (WAC).
The portfolio includes more than 76,000 loans, all owned by Fannie Mae, with an unpaid principal balance of $12.2 billion, the companies said Tuesday. The terms of the sale were not disclosed. The rights are expected to transfer from Wells Fargo Home Mortgage to Reverse Mortgage Solutions, a subsidiary of the Tampa, Fla., asset manager, on June 31.
Wells Fargo ceased originating reverse mortgages in June 2011. The sale is not expected to have a material impact on earnings, and Wells Fargo will continuing servicing the non-Fannie Mae reverse mortgages in its portfolio, a company spokeswoman said.
Wells Fargo is the nation's second-largest mortgage servicer, with a portfolio totaling $1.9 trillion. The bank had indicated that it would explore the market for rights sales; last month, Chief Financial Officer Timothy Sloan told investors that Wells Fargo was "pleased" with the market for servicing sales and may look to sell rights "from time to time."
Walter has been rapidly expanding its mortgage-servicing business. It paid $120 million for the Texas-based Reverse Mortgage Solutions last year, and last month it agreed to buy a mortgage business from Ally Financial. In October, it partnered with Ocwen Financial to win a bidding war for the origination and servicing assets of Residential Capital Corp.
"We expect that the acquisition …will be an attractive addition to our reverse mortgage servicing portfolio and solidify our position as a leader in the reverse mortgage sector," said Walter Investment Chairman and Chief Executive Mark O'Brien in the news release.