There is a reason why we are one of the top home loan originators in the country — our people. Our team of professionals understands the processes involved in loans and refinances and will be there for you for every step on your way to your new home or your refinance. From your initial paperwork until the day your loan is complete, our team will focus on helping you build your future. Take a few minutes to get to know the team at Simplify Home Loans LLC. Then, give us a call at 888-690-1744 and put us to work for you!
Jacob Deegan, Owner
NMLS # 153997
Jacob has been involved in the mortgage business since 2001 when he was a senior in high school dividing his time between his education and working for a mortgage company. Within his first few months on the job, he set the company record for most loans closed in a month. By age 20, he was managing the highest producing loan officer team of the year. Over the next 16 years, he continued to gain experience, managing as many as 30 personnel simultaneously. He was ranked as the #1 highest producing loan officer of VA loans for 5 years straight (2010-2014) by Scotsman Guide, the mortgage industry’s main publication.
In August 2016, Jacob founded Simplify Home Loans, LLC. As the owner, operator and mortgage loan originator, he is primarily responsible for overseeing the process of loan acquisition, researching new innovations, arranging loans for our clients and managing finances. He is the architect of our company’s mindset. Jacob created Simplify Home Loans, LLC to be a client-oriented resource for veterans and their families. He emphasizes to his clients and his team that his #1 goal is to put our clients in the very best financial position possible, and he makes good on his word by searching through over 200 different lenders’ rate sheets to secure the best loan options that meet the needs of our clients.
In addition to aiding veterans, Jacob loves golf, sports (especially the Utah Jazz), riding ATVs and being a father to his amazing 5-year-old boy, Hudson.
Joshua Jensen, Senior Loan Officer
Meet Joshua J. Jensen! Joshua has been with Simplify Home Loans from the very start. We are proud to have him aboard because Josh has been among the top 10 producing VA loan officers in the nation in 2014, 2015 and 2016, and he plans to return to the top 10 once again in 2018. Over the course of his career, Josh has helped save his veterans a combined total of more than $35,000 a month! At Simplify Home Loans, Josh says he enjoys its close-knit group of coworkers. He describes his service at this company this way: “As a loan officer, you have to be licensed and have to continue to enhance your mortgage education. I am able use my experience to help other team members with questions, issues or concerns that they may run into which might be outside of the normal loan requirements.”
Family time is the most important time to Josh. All his hobbies incorporate his family, whether it’s playing at parks with their dogs or finding new places to enjoy breakfast together on the weekends. From March to November, Josh and his family enjoy Real Salt Lake soccer, and from September through January, they root for Wisconsin football, both the Badgers and the Packers. Josh loves golf. He says he owes a lot of what he has to having golf as a hobby. Not only has the game taken him all over the continent, golf was also the reason he met his wife! Joshua and his wife have been married for five years, and now they are busy chasing around their little daughter who’s an even busier toddler.
Jen Pierce, Senior Loan Officer
Meet Jen Pierce! Serving as a Senior Loan Officer, Jen joined our ranks at Simplify Home Loans in April of 2019. She has worked in the mortgage industry for 10 years (eight of which she worked with Simplify’s owner, Jake Deegan). Jen received her bachelor’s degree from Weber State University. She and her family grew up in Bountiful, Utah, but she has also spent several years living out of state in Arizona, Texas and even Brazil! Jen said, “When I’m not working, I’m usually on the river fly fishing, golfing, attending a sporting event, or spending time with friends and family.” And regarding Simplify Home Loans, Jen said, “It definitely has a family atmosphere where all team members are happy to do anything they can to get a loan closed.” She said, “As a Loan Officer I pride myself in being very thorough, transparent and direct. … In fact, my friends would qualify me as an “over-explainer,” but this quality comes in handy in the mortgage industry.”
Jared Read, Loan Officer
NMLS # 1734887
Meet Jared Read! Simplify Home Loans is happy to welcome Jared, our new loan officer, to the team! Jared is the second oldest of five children. He has two brothers and two sisters. Jared comes from a very close-knit family. In fact, Jared’s family members all live within a few minutes of one another. He says his 6-year-old daughter, Jayvree, has him wrapped around her finger. Jared loves every minute of watching his daughter grow up, though he says it’s happening way too fast. He enjoys outdoor activities like golfing, skiing, fishing, hunting, camping and mountain hikes with Jayvree and their two dogs. Jared loves the environment at Simplify Home Loans and appreciates being a part of a great team. He says he wants to provide the best possible customer service to the veterans who have served our country so well.
Nathan Walker, Loan Officer
Meet Nathan Walker! Simplify Home Loans welcomes Nathan as a Loan Officer. He began working with us in December 2018. Nathan has three children. He loves to go camping with his family. They like to take their side-by-sides to the mountains to go trail-riding. Nathan also enjoys playing golf and going to the gym. He appreciates how our company plans activities outside of work, which contributes to the many reasons why Simplify Home Loans seems like a family. Nathan said, “I feel like I can contribute to the company’s success with my years of experience in the mortgage industry.” Nathan also said he has been originating loans for nearly 20 years. During that time, he has been grateful for the opportunity to work with veterans and to serve their families with their mortgage and financial needs.
Nathan Blair, Loan Officer
Meet Nathan Blair! We are proud to have Nathan as a loan officer here at Simplify Home Loans. Nathan says he enjoys helping others with their financial needs, and he loves to spend every free moment with his family. When asked what the best part is about working for our company, Nathan said it’s that we “simplify home loans.” He also appreciates that he can tell borrowers that we can help because we’re genuinely able to provide them with the best rate and some of the best pricing.
Ashlen Page, Processing Manager
Ashlen efficiently assists borrowers in assembling their documents and submitting their applications to the loan officer for approval. She loves the easygoing atmosphere at Simplify Home Loans, LLC, as well as the opportunity to work with great people every day. Ashlen graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business management in the spring of 2018.
Outside of work, Ashlen enjoys spending her time reading, painting her nails, practicing new nail art designs and planning her next travel adventure. She visited 5 different countries in 2017.
Marty Healey, Loan Officer Assistant
Marty handles loan acquisition and documentation, assistance to borrowers, and the preparation of files for processing. His family’s military service dates back to the Revolutionary War. Marty served in the U.S. Air Force from 1983 to 1997 and spent 6 years as a radar technician at historic Wendover, UT, the largest military installation in the world during WWII. He was stationed with the 299th Range Control Squadron, the first air force unit in the world to be FAA certified. Marty has been in the mortgage industry for two and a half years, specializing in VA purchases and refinances. Helping fellow veterans achieve their financial goals has been a very rewarding experience for him.
Marty was born in Boston, MA, and moved to Utah in 1981. The youngest of nine children, he is an avid golfer and is fluent in French thanks to his two-year church mission in France and Belgium.
Cynthia Gardner, Loan Officer Assistant
Meet Cynthia Gardner! We are so happy to welcome Cynthia as a Loan Officer Assistant. She has been with our company since June 2019, but Cynthia was initially introduced to the realty and mortgage world at age 17, beginning as a customer service intake rep for a VA mortgage broker. “I absolutely loved all the people I worked with and fell in love with the industry,” Cynthia said. “Soon after, I started my education and completed the requirements to be a licensed Realtor with the lofty goals of becoming a Loan Officer.” Cynthia comes from a large family with 12 brothers and sisters. Cynthia said her parents are both entrepreneurs, which explains why she “caught the bug early.” Cynthia said, “I love people, so any venue where I’m able to network and meet new people is where you’ll find me.” She also enjoys watching and participating in sports. “I was raised to be a team player and personally thrive as part of a group of hard-working individuals,” Cynthia said. “I’m really impressed with the cohesive dynamic at Simplify Home Loans.”
Tara Marquardt, Loan Officer Assistant
Meet Tara Marquardt! In the summer of 2019, Tara began working with Simplify Home Loans as a Loan Officer Assistant. She is pursuing her bachelor’s degree to work in Special Education. And in terms of her interests, Tara said, “I love going on adventures, meeting new people — and food. I really love food. I’m always open to new restaurant suggestions.” Tara also said her favorite aspect of working for Simplify Home Loans is that everyone in the company is friendly and welcoming. “It makes for an awesome work environment,” Tara said. She helps our clients by reaching out and connecting with them, so she can help them see the potential in their finances.
Stella Copa, Loan Officer Assistant
Meet Stella! Simplify Home Loans is happy to have Stella serving with us as a Loan Officer Assistant. She began working with our company in March of 2019. She said her favorite aspect of working for Simplify Home Loans is having the opportunity to work directly with our clients. As a Loan Officer Assistant, Stella has the distinct pleasure of helping borrowers navigate their way through the loan process. In this way, Stella is another one of our valued employees who exemplify exactly what we do here, which is to “simplify home loans” for veterans.
Becky Jensen, Loan Processor
Becky is responsible for sending information via eDisclosure, registering loans, ordering titles and locking rates. She has worked in the VA loans industry since 2014 and has always loved the people and the relaxed atmosphere. Simplify Home Loans in particular feels like a tight-knit family to her.
Becky earned her aesthetician’s license from the Mandalyn Academy in 2012. Outside the office, she greatly enjoys hiking, camping, attending concerts, spending time with her friends and boyfriend, caring for her two cats, and cleaning her home.
Nate Gazaway, Loan Processor
Meet Nate Gazaway! Simplify Home Loans welcomes Nate as our newest loan processor! He says he likes the office atmosphere at Simplify and appreciates that our company is excelling at a time when many other mortgage companies are struggling. Nate has been married since 2006. He loves spending time with his wife, especially on road trips! Nate is also a big sports fan who loves to root for the Utah Jazz and the Denver Broncos.
Jessica Sirstins, Loan Processor
Meet Jessica Sirstins! We are proud to have Jessica join us as a Mortgage Loan Processor. Though she began serving with Simplify Home Loans in June 2019, Jessica has
been working in the mortgage industry for five years. Jessica comes from a small family: She grew up with a single mother and an older brother. In August 2018, Jessica became a proud, new aunt when her brother had his first baby! “I don’t have any ‘human children’ yet,” Jessica said, “but I have two dogs with my boyfriend, Jesse.” In their spare time, the couple enjoy traveling and watching sports together. Jessica said she loves that Simplify Home Loans is small and has so much potential to grow. “I hope to contribute to the team’s growth and bring nothing but support to my co-workers,” Jessica said. A few interesting facts about Jessica: She is a licensed cosmetologist and barber. Jessica tries to attend cooking classes at least once a month, and she also teaches dance to a young group of girls.
Tawny Wood, Loan Processor
Meet Tawny Wood! We warmly welcome Tawny who now serves as a Loan Processor for Simplify Home Loans. She joined our team in April 2019. Tawny said she and her husband have “five beautiful children, two ugly dogs and a cat.” They are also proud of their three amazing grandchildren, and they’re anxiously awaiting a fourth one who’s on the way! Tawny loves Halloween, family camp-outs and being outdoors in the sun as much as possible. She also likes to work with our amazing group of people here at Simplify Home Loans. “I really enjoy the team and family feeling we all have here,” Tawny said. “I work hard to close loans and to make sure our clients have a great experience along the way.”
Valerie Johnson, Loan Processor
Meet Valerie Johnson! Simplify Home Loans welcomes Valerie as a Processor. Though she started with our company in June 2019, Valerie has worked in the mortgage industry for nine years. She loves the summertime, outdoor concerts, barbecues, water, sunshine, the beach, boats, and especially Lake Powell. And Valerie is the proud grandma of a 5-year-old grandson who “has her heart.” Valerie’s favorite part of working with Simplify Home Loans is being part of such a fantastic team. “I enjoy working with such incredible people,” Valerie said. “I’m very proud to be a part of this company.” She is also proud to contribute to the ongoing success of Simplify Home Loans due to her depth of knowledge in the mortgage industry. Valerie has previously worked with our company’s owner, Jacob Deegan, for four years earlier in her career. Valerie said she has no doubt that the sky’s the limit for this company.
Michelle VanAllen, Office Manager
Meet Michelle VanAllen! Since the very beginning, Michelle has been a faithful and essential part of Simplify Home Loans. She began in 2015 as the personal assistant to owner Jake Deegan, helping him prepare for the launch of the company, where she continues to serve a vital role as office manager. Michelle studied office management at Utah Valley University. Specifically, she is in charge of all the licensing for the company and for the loan officers. In short, Michelle says she takes care of everything that’s not loan-related for the company.
She enjoys the staff and the company culture at Simplify, and she loves that their team gets to help veterans. Michelle and her amazing husband, Zach, are approaching their 13th year of marriage. They have 2 adorable kids, a 6 year old girl and a brand new baby boy. Michelle loves to spend time at her family’s cabin in the summertime, and she says her family is “a little bit obsessed” with Disneyland. They have visited “the Happiest Place on Earth” four times in the past two years, and they have plans to return again at least once in 2019.
Maggie Peterson, Administrative Assistant
Meet Maggie Peterson! She has been working as the administrative assistant at Simplify Home Loans since January 2018. When describing her job responsibilities, Maggie says she “helps with everything not loan-related.” She graduated from American Fork High School, which is where she met her husband. They began dating after graduation and have been happily married for four years. Maggie says she and her husband love cooking as a culinary team, and they always look for new adventures and experiences to share together. And perhaps the icing on the cake is they are both crazy about dogs! Maggie loves hiking and basically doing anything outdoors to savor and soak up the summertime! She is attending school to become a master aesthetician, and she also does makeup on the side. Maggie says she loves the environment and the people she works with at Simplify Home Loans. “Not only does Simplify make it their No. 1 priority to help veterans, but they truly care about everyone who helps to make it all come together,” Maggie said. “People will forget what you said. They will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel. Simplify Home Loans exceeds this 100 percent!”