For the eighth year in a row, we compiled the industry’s most comprehensive list of the nation’s top mortgage
originators. The rankings include
not only the originators who are
closing the most dollar volume and
the most loans, but also the leaders
in niche areas, like Federal Housing
Administration, U.S. Department of
Veterans Affairs and U.S. Department
of Agriculture loans as well as home
equity lines of credit.
View Scotsman Guide’s
Top Originators 2016 at
By Steven Wyble
Kara Askey started working in the banking industry
as a teller in college. She started at her current employer, TruStone Financial Federal Credit Union, in
2012 as a phone banker in a customer service role.
In 2014, she began originating home equity loans.
The next year, she joined a special team the credit
union had set up to handle second-mortgage referrals from industry partners.
Since entering the industry, Askey has quickly built
up her loan production, particularly with home
equity lines of credit, or HELOCs. She ranked No. 7
on the Top HELOC Volume list in Scotsman Guide’s
most recent annual rankings, based on 2016 data.
“I would definitely say … (my success) has been
through successful partnerships,” she says.
“I’ve built a strong referral business and am able to
deliver consistently. Most of my partners choose
to work with me because of my attention to detail
and the patience that I have with borrowers, that
I can walk them through this whole process.”
Additionally, Askey says her credit union’s “
phenomenal” underwriting and support team allows
her to turn around a loan from application to closing in 24 hours — a feat that she says has helped her
earn a stellar reputation and to grow her business.
Located in Plymouth, a western suburb of Minneapolis, Askey notes that the mortgage business
used to be seasonal, slowing down in the winter.
That’s changing, she says. As the Minnesota real
estate market continues heating up, business is
Steven Wyble is online content editor for Scotsman Guide Media.
Reach him at (800) 297-6061 or email@example.com.
booming throughout the year — and so is Askey’s
Ultimately, Askey says her desire to make people’s
lives better is what keeps her working in the industry.
“I just enjoy helping people, and that’s the way I look
at it,” she says. “Whether you’re helping them purchase their dream home or helping them refinance
to put them in a better situation, helping them consolidate debt, it all boils down to just being able to
help people, and that’s the one thing that I love.”
Askey says it was a bit of a challenge getting to understand the lending side of banking at first, but it’s
been interesting to learn. As Askey’s grown professionally, she has become more confident. When she
first started originating loans, for example, she says
she kept a notebook by the phone with a checklist
to make sure she didn’t forget to mention anything
to the borrower. She has long since abandoned the
checklist, she says.
Aksey has no intention of abandoning her professional growth, however. As 2017 came to a close,
Askey was in the final stages of earning an MBA
“That’s been super helpful in maintaining and even
expanding my relationship with clients, because it
just gives you more of a well-rounded perspective
to deal with people on a daily basis,” she says of
her professional-development work. “I am excited
about continued growth and success (in the mortgage industry).”
Kara Askey, TruStone Financial Federal Credit Union
No. 7 HELOC Volume (2016)