Federal Savings Bank opens loan production office in Las Vegas

The Federal Savings Bank may be unknown to most local homeowners, but the Chicago-based financial institution is “bullish” about home lending in Nevada, according to the bank’s chief executive.

The bank, bought in April 2011 by a pair of Chicago brothers in the mortgage banking business, is opening a loan production office on East Warm Springs Road that will employ 12 mortgage brokers, with that figure rising to 50 in the near future.

“As part of our long-term growth strategy, we have identified geographic areas where there is a gap in lending for individuals who want to achieve … homeownership,” said Steve Calk, chairman and CEO of Federal Savings Bank. “As a result, we opened the Las Vegas loan production office.”

Calk said the bank has experienced tremendous growth in the past two years, and plans “are for that growth to continue at a steady pace.”

He said the bank focuses on three areas of residential mortgage lending: first-time homebuyers, veterans, and jumbo buyers, who buy anything above $417,000.

“This bank did a loan in all 50 states within the first 75 days of the year,” Calk said. “Our primary focus is residential mortgage banking. We tend to specialize in veterans because me and my brother are veterans.”

He said the bank is “veteran-owned and operated.” Calk is a former combat helicopter pilot, and his brother, John, is a former tank commander.

The Federal Savings Bank was created after National Bancorp Holdings’ purchase of Generations Bank, which was owned by bankrupt Brooke Corp.

“We’re very bullish on the rebound in Nevada,” Calk said Monday in a phone interview. “We’ve lent in Las Vegas and Nevada for many years. We really feel now is the time for a full-service loan production office in Las Vegas.”

Calk said he expects to do more than $1 billion in home loans in 2014, primarily first mortgages.

Garrett Law, an executive vice president with Federal Savings Bank, will manage the Las Vegas office.

When asked why his former mortgage company was able to buy the bank and expand its operations, Calk attributed the bank’s good fortune to not getting involved in subprime lending. He said the bank couldn’t understand how consumers would be able to pay back the loan.

“We avoided the land mine because it didn’t make sense,” Calk said.

Today, Federal Savings Bank operates branches in Overland Park, Kan., and Chicago and three loan production offices in Illinois, two in New York, and one each in Maryland, Nevada and Arizona.

Contact reporter Chris Sieroty at csieroty@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @sierotyfeatures on Twitter.

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