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It's a seller's market for independent mortgage banker acquisitions. Many nonbank lender owners are looking to cash out as they near retirement age, according to Stratmor Group, with the anticipated drop in refinance volume contributing to the pickup in activity.

For would-be buyers, acquiring an established organization provides an easier path for adding top-producing talent and loan volume, rather than recruiting workers piecemeal and growing organically, the advisory firm said.

Here's a look at seven fundamentals that sellers should concentrate on — and buyers should look for — when evaluating an acquisition.