Mortgage Sites Look to Portals

Online mortgage vendors appear to have taken the Federal Reserve’s 50 basis point interest rate cut Monday to heart, hoping it will drive consumers to buy a home or refinance a mortgage. At least two firms — LendingTree Inc. and American Mortgage Holdings — are turning to portal sites to help capture consumer eyeballs.

Online lending exchange LendingTree Wednesday cut a deal with Yahoo under which it will offer its Lend-X powered LendingTree Exchange through the Mortgage Center on Yahoo Finance.

“LendingTree’s commitment to provide consumers with convenience, choice and excellent value complements Yahoo Finance’s goal to deliver easy-to-use personal finance content, tools and services,” said Tim Sheehan, director of production, Yahoo Finance.

Tom Reddin, president and chief operating officer of LendingTree, added, “This is a powerful combination of two of the leading brands on the Internet.” He predicted that Yahoo’s users will increase the number of loan requests through LendingTree, and help it grow towards sustainable profitability.

American Mortgage Holdings apparently had the same idea when it expanded its partnership with Microsoft Tuesday. Under their multi-year deal, MSN Online’s home and real estate guide, MSN HomeAdvisor, will make American Home’s MortgageSelect.com division its only integrated mortgage provider.

“We are very excited about our partnership with MSN HomeAdvisor, and believe it is a perfect synergy with our corporate goals and consumer initiatives,” said Donald Henig, executive vice president of new sales channels for MortgageSelect.com. “While the deal allows American Home Mortgage the benefit of working with a recognized market leader, gaining increased reach and access to homebuyers and homeowners, it also provides MSN HomeAdvisor users with the kind of superlative, personal, consultative service that’s been the hallmark of our online business. It’s a win-win for our company as well as the consumer.”

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