Bear Stearns breaks into mortgagesmortgagepress.comresidential mortgages, non-conforming, sub-prime mortgages Bear Stearns Companies has begun making home loans to consumers to generate mortgages to sell to investors in the mortgage market. The brokerage is setting up Bear Stearns Residential Mortgage Corporation to underwrite the loans. The new company will initially focus on underwriting non-conforming loans, including loans with large balances, alt-A loans that require less documentation, and sub-prime lending. The New York-based investment bank will pool together the mortgages it underwrites and sell them as securities to institutional investors. The average loan size will be in the $225,000-$250,000 range and as large as $3 million. Bear Stearns will lend via mortgage brokers. Among prime loans, Bear Stearns will offer $10,000-$25,000 home equity loans for now. While the bank has underwritten mortgages in the past under a private label, most of the loans it has pulled together into mortgage-backed securities were purchased in blocks of $100 million to several billion dollars in size. Based in New York, Bear Stearns Companies is a global securities firm. For more information, call (888) 473-3819 or visit www.bearstearns.com.