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LAS VEGAS — The word heard constantly around the American Credit Union Mortgage Association’s Fall Conference here was “opportunity,” as it pertains to credit unions being able to make hay of the housing downturn to boost its own market share of business.

From the first speaker’s call to action to delivery on the last day of survey results about CU mortgage lending to the buzz at networking breaks and luncheons the prime directive came through: it’s now or never for CUs to appeal for consumers’ mortgage loans. Even Bob Dorsa, a longtime advocate for increased CU mortgage activity told the 200-plus attendees, “The people in this room can make credit union history. You are the choir and I won’t preach to you, but while you’re here I hope you’ll be inspired to go back home and reach out to other credit unions in your area that don’t do mortgages because that’s what really has to happen for it to take off.”

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