Ditech

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Ditech is a lender, offering mortgages, and lines of credit. Ditech started in 1995 and it was based in Costa Mesa, California.[1] The company is now based in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania after Ditech closed its Costa Mesa office on February 3, 2010.

The corporation was owned by Ally Financial, specifically GMAC ResCap which purchased Ditech from its private owner in 1999. In late 2006, a controlling interest of 51% of GMAC was acquired by private equity outfit Cerberus Capital Management. As of 2008, Ditech is part of Residential Capital, LLC (also known as "ResCap") which includes ditech and several GMAC-branded lending businesses.

History[edit]

Ditech was established in 1995. The company was based in Costa Mesa, California until 2010. Presently, Ditech is based in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania.

The company's name is a portmanteau derived from the phrase Direct Technology.[2]

Lending[edit]

Despite advertising efforts, Ditech's loans and mortgages have been categorized as subprime lending products. Ditech was a pioneer in offering 125 percent loans, in which the borrower could get more than the property was worth. It specialized in low-documentation mortgages, or stated income loans where many borrowers falsified their income.[3]

Many holders of these mortgages have defaulted or, unable to repay them, have received interest rate adjustments, creating the possibility of losses among those who in turn lent to Ditech's parent, ResCap. "Owners of some notes issued by ResCap are being asked to trade them in for new bonds with face values of as little as 80 cents on the dollar. Other holders are being offered the chance to sell back bonds to the company, for as little as 65 cents on the dollar."[4]

On February 3, 2010, Ditech closed their Costa Mesa office. As of June 1, 2013, Ditech is in operation out of the Fort Washington, Pennsylvania offices, where the GMAC building, once stood. This new Ditech was formed from the assets from the GMACRescap estate, purchased by Walters Investments/Greentree Originations in November 2012.

Advertising[edit]

Ditech is best known for its commercials which aired during the 2000s. They featured a nefarious loan officer, played by actor Ron Michaelson, repeating the catch phrase "Lost another loan to Ditech" written by Writer, Producer, Director Ken Roberts who created the Ditech television and radio commercials from 1995 to 2007. In May 2007, the company introduced a new marketing campaign, adding the tagline "People Are Smart" and including the signature line Home financing by GMAC to further help distinguish the Ditech brand from direct-to-consumer lenders of questionable repute. Ditech had immensely high unaided brand awareness and customer satisfaction, but many people thought Ditech was a sub-prime lender.[5]

Along with the new tagline and distinctive, new illustration-based TV campaign, Ditech also introduced, for the first time, a menu of branded products. These products included the "Sleep EZ Loan", a fixed rate mortgage that gives borrowers payment relief by allowing them to pay interest only for the first ten years without any negative amortization, and "Real Life Plan,", which combined a first mortgage, home equity loan, and a credit card that builds points to pay down mortgage principal.

During a commercial break on CNN on September 11, 2001 in the United States, a Ditech commercial was running before being cut midway, to announce that a plane had struck one of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. This would begin CNN's ongoing live footage of the September 11 attacks.[6]

In popular culture[edit]

Saturday Night Live parodied the popularity and ubiquity of Ditech's earlier advertising tag. A sketch featuring an impression of US President George W. Bush stated,

You know, we're roughly $7 billion in debt. Uh, but don't worry, I've got a plan. I've decided to consolidate all of our debt with one of those debt consolidation companies. That's right. We're gonna go with Ditech. Like me, you've probably seen their commercials late at night on ESPN2. You know, the ones with the guy who says, "Lost another loan to Ditech!" It's a funny commercial!

—Saturday Night Live, [7]

References[edit]

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