To help foster member engagement, Weekly Report will publish periodic Member Spotlights that feature professionals from across the reverse mortgage ecosystem.
In this issue, we present Regina Eldridge, director of the reverse mortgage division at Success Mortgage Partners, and chairwoman of NRMLA’s Membership Committee.
- How did you get into the reverse mortgage world? One of the LO’s that worked with me in my first mortgage shop was a retired VP in the Savings and Loan industry and he asked if I would set up his Reverse Mortgage when he prepared to retire for the second time!
- What current topics in the reverse mortgage world are you most focused on now? Reverse “remodeling” … how our HECM product moves forward in FHA and non-FHA offerings while continuing to serve homeowners in all financial thresholds.
- What has been your biggest professional challenge/obstacle thus far? How did you overcome/handle it? I grew up in the northwest Houston, TX area, and spent time each summer in a smaller east Texas town where my parents grew up. I saw the benefits of the housing/mortgage industry and the challenges of areas where mortgage lending was not available. My husband and I have always lived in the smaller, rural influenced communities and I wanted to not only stay in the mortgage industry, to also grow in the industry. From the day I opened my first office serving 13 counties, I have embraced every opportunity in technology, marketing, communication and travel to bring opportunities to our customers wherever they live. (Yes, my first FedEx bills were typically $3-$4,000 per month, really!)
- What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment in your career to date? Being one of the first women to open and sustain my own mortgage shop and successfully move from there to the next level of mortgage banking & wholesale.
- If you could offer one piece of advice to someone who wants to get into the reverse mortgage world, what would it be and why? Love what you do and who you work with and the rest will fall in place.
- Who has been a mentor to you in your career? How has their work impacted yours? I have been extremely blessed to have worked with many people in our industry who have graciously shared their insight and knowledge with me, as well as others. In my early years in the industry, it would be David Motley of Colonial National Mortgage in Ft Worth, TX. He probably has no idea how I looked to him for his constant vision and steadfast business management throughout some of the most challenging times in the mortgage industry. In my recent years in the industry it is Vincent Lee, our senior founding partner of Success Mortgage Partners. He is by far the most motivating and positive people person ever in this industry. If there is a “people” question (employee, customers, etc.) I ask myself, ‘What Would Vince Do?’ wins every time!
- Why did you become a NRMLA member? Through my employer in wholesale. Business associations have always been a part of my business DNA.
- What has been your favorite NRMLA event and why? The first virtual conference & the Annual Mtg in TN would be a tie for me. Both achieved great success in member camaraderie and valuable training for every level of participant.
- What do you like to do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies or pursuits? Restoring old homes (started this before the age of “flippers” … lol)
- If you could trade places with anyone for a day, who would it be and why? Our own Steve Irwin of NRMLA. Steve is uniquely positioned to be in the “center of the circle” in the Reverse world. He gets to see the biggest picture of legislative as well as business impact in Reverse. He has a history in our industry that can tell us what has and has not worked well for business as well as consumers. In addition, he has the patience to work with legislative officials and committees and to represent our industry in a positive and professional manner.
- What do you love most about working in the reverse mortgage industry? Making a difference in the lives of Senior Retirement, in particular for the many men and women who did not have the opportunity to enjoy the financial benefits of working in a professional earnings capacity.
- Who inspires you? The many loan originators in our industry who day in and day out take whatever is thrown at them from a legislative & compliant standpoint and still meet with Seniors every day with a smile on their face and a commitment to using their knowledge to help seniors have a better life.
- What is your favorite food city? I live in the middle of some of the most world renowned BBQ in the state of Texas. However, my favorite food city is actually Golden, CO. I think it is the overall ambiance of the relaxed atmosphere I enjoy most. Favorite meal in said city? Rocky Mountain Rainbow Trout (I don’t have to catch and clean-just enjoy!)
- What’s one item you can’t live without? Hmm, my cell phone… It is my circle for family, friends, work, and so much more.