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US properties, American clients

US mortgage services firm Parsec Loans finds working out of New Delhi better for both the company and its customers.

india Updated: Jul 22, 2006 10:53 IST

The properties are in the US and the clients Indian Americans, but mortgage services firm Parsec Loans still finds working out of this satellite town of New Delhi better for both the company and its customers.

A premier mortgage provider, US-headquartered Parsec Loans, an affiliate of California-based Parsec Interact Inc, entered into mortgage services in April 2005, taking off from the BPO services it was earlier providing to major companies.

"We are a BPO and yet not a BPO as we profile homeowners, mainly Indian Americans, their credit rating and income, interface with borrowers and match a lender or mortgage provider by programming the needs," Prabhat Agarwal, CEO and co-founder of Parsec Loans informed.

"We try to get our clients the best possible terms and help them to complete the paperwork. Since most of the work is done on telephone and Internet, we find working out of Gurgaon helps cut down the cost and enables us to give better service to the homeowner," said Agarwal.

With around 100 mortgage bankers in the US market and a lot of paperwork involved, Parsec Loans has found that handling most of the operations from India with the large availability of trained manpower and better quality of support aid in cutting down costs by 40-50 per cent.

"The 40-50 pe rcent savings on operation costs helps us give added value to homeowners. Having successfully completed the pilot phase with 100 loan cases worth $30-40 million, with the average loan being around $250,000, we are ready to ramp up operations," said Agarwal.

This year the company is targeting handling 250-300 cases.

"In three years, our target is to handle $2-3 billion worth of loans, which would translate into around 10,000 deals. This will find us expanding the workforce from 50 now to 1,000," said Agarwal, who has been associated with US-based ventures for the past 12 years but has opted to operate out of India.

The India end looks after all the paperwork, including title verification and home appraisal reports while the direct client servicing is done in California, where co-promoter Rajeev Minocha mans the operations.

Being a member of the California Association of Mortgage Brokers and the Better Business Bureau has helped Parsec Loans build up a good clientele, which is growing more through word of mouth.

The strategy employed by Parsec Loans is to recruit people who can communicate in the language of the borrower and become lifelong advisors given the trend of people shifting houses after five years on an average.

"The trend in the US is towards owning a house or apartment. The laws there are so clear that it is better to own a property as one can use it as a collateral for raising funds or easily sell to acquire another property," said Agarwal.

As most of the mortgage loans in the US are for an average of 30 years, the clients are continually updated on various options in mortgage loans through webinars (web seminars) and telemarketing.

"In the long term, we may get into mortgage lending and banking activity. The more immediate expansion plans, however, include servicing non-resident Indians and people of Indian origin keen to acquire property in India," Agarwal said.

"One year down the line we also plan to offer the mortgage services to the Chinese, Filipinos and Spaniards -- these are some of the under serviced markets that are growing very fast. To service them better, we plan to open back offices in the home countries," he added.