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Pensacola Business Radio-4-27-16 Guests: Bob Pitts / Willow Bend Mortgage, Steve Cox / Modern Woodmen


Bob Pitts / Willow Bend Mortgage

Willow Bend Mortgage was founded in North Dallas by Bill Shaddock in December 1993. It was formed as a small brokerage shop built on servant leadership principles.  Over the next 20 years, the leadership, which is still in place today, has organically grown Willow Bend Mortgage into a full scale mortgage banking operation with offices now across Texas in the Dallas/Ft. Worth, Houston, Austin, San Antonio, McAllen, and Corpus Christi metroplexes as well as across the state of Alabama.  The company is headquartered in Plano, Texas and annually generates $500+ million of single family and reverse mortgages.

Willow Bend Mortgage loan officers pride themselves on building relationships with their clients by putting their clients’ interests first and navigating them through today’s over-regulated mortgage environment with a product mix, expertise, and operations staff that is second to none.


A reverse mortgage is a loan available to homeowners who are 62 years or older that enables them to convert part of their equity in their home into tax-free cash! FHA, who insures the reverse mortgage, for the benefit of the borrower, terms this a “Home Equity Conversion Mortgage” (HECM).

The product was conceived as a means to help retirees improve their quality of life utilizing the accumulated equity in their homes. The “tax free” proceeds may be used to cover living expenses, pay for long term health care, pay off their existing mortgage and even to take that long awaited vacation. The attractive part of the HECM is that there are no restrictions on how the proceeds can be used…IT IS YOURS TO DO WHAT EVER YOU WANT!

The loan is called a reverse mortgage because the traditional mortgage everyone is used to has a payback stream that is in reverse. Instead of making payments to a lender, as with the traditional mortgage, the borrower makes no payments, with a HECM and the lender makes payments to the borrower. The HECM also has many varied options the borrower can take advantage of.

How is a Reverse Mortgage Repaid?

Borrowers want to sell:

  • The property is sold
  • HECM loan balance (principal plus accumulated interest and MIP) is repaid
  • Remaining equity goes to the existing borrower(s) or their heirs.

Borrowers want to sell and purchase a new home using a HECM for home purchase:

  • Combine a new reverse mortgage with the proceeds from the sale above to purchase a new home

One borrower passes away:

  • Nothing changes — the loan is not due and payable until the surviving borrower moves or passes away

Both borrowers pass away:

The heirs may pay the balance due on the reverse mortgage, refinance the property into their own name, or sell the home, for fair-market value, and use the proceeds to pay off the reverse mortgage. Any remaining equity after the reverse mortgage is repaid is theirs to keep.



Steve Cox / Modern Woodmen Financial

About Modern Woodmen of America

Modern Woodmen of America is a member-owned fraternal financial services organization. We secure futures with financial guidance and products. We touch lives with fraternalism. Since 1883, Modern Woodmen has brought people together, supported families and strengthened communities nationwide.

The Basics

  • Modern Woodmen was founded by Joseph Cullen Root in 1883 in Lyons, Iowa.
  • Our home office is located in Rock Island, Ill.
  • As a fraternal benefit society, we are not-for-profit, have a representative form of government and have a system of local chapters.
  • Serving nearly 770,000 members, Modern Woodmen is the nation’s third largest fraternal benefit society.
  • Approximately 500 people are employed at the Rock Island home office. Modern Woodmen has regional offices in 47 states, and has more than 1,600 financial representatives.
  • Modern Woodmen has $37 billion of life insurance in force.
  • Modern Woodmen has $14 billion in assets.
  • Modern Woodmen has an A+ (Superior) rating from A.M. Best, an independent insurance industry rating agency. A+ (Superior) is the second highest of 15 ratings.

Products and Subsidiaries

  • Modern Woodmen’s main product lines are life insurance, annuity and investment* products designed for the family market.
  • Established in 2001, MWA Financial Services Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Modern Woodmen that functions as a full-service broker dealer and distributes securities products.
  • Modern Woodmen Bank opened for business in 2003, and provides a complete array of personal banking products and services.

Member Benefits

  • Through fraternal programs, benefits and activities, Modern Woodmen put more than $19 million into members’ local communities in 2014.
  • Approximately 3,000 local chapters nationwide offer social, educational and volunteer service opportunities.
  • Nearly 800 youth service clubs nationwide provide members from age toddler to teen opportunities to volunteer, learn and have fun.


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