Top 20 Commercial Mortgage Banking Firms of 2021

Originations may increase significantly if investors that have been staying on the sidelines get back in the game.

You can also read our other Mortgage Banking Firms rankings.  

Rank Company Name Origination Volume ($MM) from 10/01/19 to 09/30/20 Percent of Lending Activity
Intermediary Direct Office Industrial Retail Multifamily Hospitality Health Care Other
1 KeyBank Real Estate Capital* $ – $ 38,200 6% 3% 13% 33% 7% 12% 26%
2 CBRE $ 15,972 $ 24,412 17% 10% 4% 61% 2% 1% 7%
3 Walker & Dunlop $ 10,260 $ 21,730 4% 2% 2% 88% 1% 2% 1%
4 Berkadia $ 6,129 $ 18,616 2% 1% 2% 85% 2% 3% 4%
5 Greystone $ – $ 14,000 5% 70% 25%
6 PGIM Real Estate $ – $ 16,772 6% 13% 1% 64% 3% 16%
7 Cushman & Wakefield $ 12,054 $ – 44% 8% 3% 28% 3%
8 NorthMarq $ 12,000 $ – 15% 10% 9% 57% 9%
9 MetLife Investment Management $ 200 $ 9,700 44% 13% 2% 31% 1% 8%
10 Lument $ 2,378 $ 6,836 95% 5%
11 Marcus & Millichap Capital Corp. (MMCC) $ 6,550 $ – 6% 3% 24% 60% 2% 5%
12 Merchants Capital Corp. $ 109 $ 3,775 92% 8%
13 Arbor Realty Trust Inc. $ – $ 7,500 96% 4%
14 Bellwether Enterprise $ 4,394 $ 2,700 8% 9% 12% 52% 1% 18%
15 Greysteel $ 269 $ – 2% 2% 8% 60% 15% 3% 10%
16 Gantry $ 3,313 $ – 17% 12% 10% 43% 2% 4% 12%
17 Financial Federal Bank $ 200 $ 15 5% 25% 5% 60% 5%
18 Gershman Investment Corp. $ – $ 1,571 90% 10%
19 M&T Realty Capital Corp. $ 342 $ 3,450 5% 10% 3% 75% 3% 5%
20 Bernard Financial Group $ 924 $ – 30% 17% 13% 33% 7%

* KeyBank Real Estate Capital’s figures reflect a fiscal year of Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2020. 

Though we make every effort to include all major commercial lenders, several notable firms (among them JLL, Bank of America and Eastdil Secured) did not participate this year.

To be included in upcoming surveys, email Jeff Hamann at jeffrey.hamann@cpe-mhn.com.

Lenders look to the horizon

The benchmark interest rate has been holding between 0 percent and 0.25 percent since the Federal Reserve’s emergency rate cuts in March, and Fed Chairman Jerome Powell has vowed to keep interest rates low until the end of the pandemic.

Though borrowers remain in an advantageous position, many property investors have been reluctant to take on new debt since a number of commercial real estate sectors remain challenged. In this year’s ranking of the top commercial mortgage banking firms, 12 of our Top 20 lenders reported year-over-year declines in origination volumes for the 12 months ending in September.

KeyBank Real Estate Capital tops our ranking this year, reporting more than $38 billion in loan originations. Rounding out the Top 3 are CBRE with close to $16 billion and Walker & Dunlop with more than $10 billion in loan originations in the 12 months ending in September. Combined, our Top 20 firms originated more than $107 billion as financial intermediaries—an 18.3 percent decline from 2019—and $140 billion as direct lenders, a 5.4 percent decline from 2019. The highest percentage of lending activity occurred in the office sector, followed by industrial and retail.

As we move through a new year, an increase in lending may be in store if many commercial investors that remained on the sidelines for the majority of 2020 decide to get back in the game. Our Top 20 firms were asked what changes in originations they expect for 2021, and 87.5 percent anticipated higher volumes. With the timeline for vaccine distribution offering hope, many commercial investors plan on returning to a faster, more predictable deal flow in 2021, leading to a resurgence in lending.

Methodology

The 2021 CPE-MHN Top Commercial Mortgage Banking Firms ranking utilized self-reported data for all firms. The ranking is a weighted formula based on a variety of factors, including total origination volume, coverage offered, growth in transaction volume and loan positioning, among others. The ranking represents what we feel is a logical balance between firm growth and market share, as well as sector diversity or specialization. Ranking factors are not limited to the data on this page.

—Madeline Harper, Senior Research Analyst, Yardi Matrix

Read the CPE-MHN Guide to 2021.

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