A major mortgage lender is cutting its lending costs to consumers, citing the improved quality of the loans it has been getting.

Effective immediately, AmeriSave Mortgage Corporation has announced that it is lifting all the published conventional overlays from its loans. Such overlays are additional charges a lender imposes for certain loan characteristics in addition to the basic charges required by the agency guaranteeing the loan.

From here forward, AmeriSave's lending guidelines will now be aligned with those of Fannie Mae, the larger of the two government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) that guarantee the majority of residential mortgages in this country. Freddie Mac is the other.

Loan performance "outstanding"

"The volume of business being delivered to our wholesale division continues to be of exceptional quality and the performance is outstanding," said Mark Lively, AmeriSave executive vice president for credit risk. "With this in mind AmeriSave believes it warrants the removal of our existing overlays to help our customers deliver even more great business to AmeriSave with fewer obstacles."

The company also announced it will be hiring another dozen wholesale and retail sales people to service different parts of the country.

AmeriSave is one of the nation's largest mortgage lenders that is not a bank, originating loans in all 50 states through online lending. It has been known for its conservative lending standards.

The elimination of its conventional overlays suggests the company sees a diminished risk in originating new mortgages and that the market is returning toward a more normal lending environment five years after the crash of the housing market.

Published on March 30, 2015