ComUnity Lending, a mortgage lender based in Morgan Hill, Calif., and Garrett, Watts & Co. have announced the formation of Branker Connect, a partnership aimed at helping brokers "achieve the benefits of becoming a mortgage banker, without the risks."Corky Watts, a principal at Garrett Watts, said the new company offers a six-step path for brokers who want to become mortgage bankers or who have made the move but are having difficulty. "Many brokers are intimidated by the challenges and learning curve involved with entering into mortgage banking, or find that they weren't as prepared as they should have been," Mr. Watts said. The six steps are: learning the business from Branker Connect's professionals; offloading mortgage operations while learning; working with the capital market department to ensure competitive prices; using a warehouse line provided by Branker Connect and its partners; using "proven mortgage technology" without a capital cost; and focusing on production, not on managing mortgage banking risks. The companies can be found online at http://www.comunitylending.com, http://www.garrettwatts.com, and http://www.brankerconnect.com.

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