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Top Originators 2009: #1 Top Overall Volume

Daniel Milstein, Gold Star Mortgage
#1 Top Overall Volume
Closed-Loans Rank: #2
Purchase-Volume Rank: #1

Daniel Milstein ranks No. 1 on Scotsman Guide's Top Originators 2009 list by volume with $374.1 million. He also closed 1,049 loans, averaging more than $350,000 for each. To achieve the top spot, Milstein maintained a frenetic pace — but he didn’t get there overnight.

As president and CEO of Gold Star Mortgage in Ann Arbor, Mich., Milstein has evolved his base from that of a predominantly Michigan market — including Big Three auto workers, foreign buyers and professional hockey players — to a multistate network of customers in his home state, Arizona, Connecticut, Florida and Texas.

Milstein can handle a $2.5 million mortgage, he says. But he noted his typical loan is much smaller. In fact, after subtracting "celebrity customers" — such as professional athletes, team owners and company CEOs — his average loan is $212,000, he says.

Although he has one full-time assistant and one part-timer — plus a marketing and public-relations coordinator — Milstein takes all of the initial applications.

“I discuss the rate and loan, get approval and submit it to the lender and then hand the file to an assistant,” he says.

All that translates into what Milstein estimates as an 80-hour work week.

“I’m usually the first one here and last to leave," he says. "I’ve always got two phones and a Blackberry with me.”

— David Robinson

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