HOUSTON – After two years of planning, seven Houston-area credit unions have formed a new CUSO – CU Companies of Texas, LLC – to provide members an array of fixed and variable first mortgage products for purchase and refinance. The seven credit unions, with a combined membership of 160,000 members, include: Cy-Fair FCU, Energy Capital CU, Houston Federal CU, Houston Municipal Employees FCU, MemberSource CU, PrimeWay FCU, and USE CU. Brad Crandall, president of CU Mortgage Services, New Brighton, Minn. explained that the genesis for CU Companies of Texas came from a case study presentation he gave at a NACUSO conference two years ago with Dennis Godfrey, CEO, Navy Federal Financial Group. After the presentation, Crandall met with Adrian Dominguez, CEO, Credit Union Acceptance Corp. (CUAC), Houston, a financial services CUSO, and one of his board members who were interested in forming a mortgage CUSO in Texas similar to CU Mortgage. “We started talking about forming a CUSO and one thing led to another,” said Crandall. CU Mortgage Services has a small interest in CU Companies of Texas, as does CU Alliance, a CU think tank. As part of the agreement, CU Mortgage Services will manage and operate CU Companies of Texas “until they get their feet on the ground and have a turnkey operation,” said Crandall who will also be president of CU Companies of Texas LLC as well as continue to lead CU Mortgage Services. He estimates that will probably take three to five years. With the new CUSO, members of the seven credit unions now have 24/7 access to online mortgage information and can apply for a full menu of Fannie Mae-compliant loans any time on the CUSO’s Web site – www.cucompaniesoftexas.com. CU Companies of Texas LLC has partnered with Prime Alliance Solutions to offer members the company’s advanced mortgage origination and approval system. Trademarked under the name HomeLoan ExpressT, the system allows the credit unions to originate loans in their offices or for members to originate their own mortgages over the Internet from their own computers and receive approval within minutes. CU Companies of Texas LLC processes its own loans and maintains its own mortgage servicing on loans originated. -

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