FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — Ruoff Mortgage is exploring a new location for a possible headquarters.
Ruoff Owner, President and CEO Mark Music confirmed work being done on a lot near Bass and Flaugh Roads is prep work for a potential new home. The company also plans to keep its space at Electric Works.
We hope to make it our HQ. Because of the pandemic-generated supply chain issues (and) building materials price inflation (particularly steel), we are still determining the actual feasibility from a cost stand point. It may prove to be more that we can responsibly budget. We have had some excavation done but it is purely for the purpose of drying out some wet soil conditions in a couple low spots on the site. We are doing this just to speed up the timeline in the event that the project is within the budget we need to meet. The campus would include approximately 275k sf and possibly be done in two phases. We don’t even have concept drawings yet. The land was less than 3% of the projected cost so it made sense to secure it while we were working on the other due diligence as we want to get started quickly if we can make the numbers work. Steel and other materials are way out of control and getting worse daily.Mark Music, Ruoff Mortgage CEO
The excavation is happening at the former location of a house listed at 6411 Bass Rd. A search of property records shows the house was recently sold to “6411 Bass Road LLC” for $950,000. That LLC is registered to 1700 Magnavox Way, Suite 220 — the current address for Ruoff Mortgage’s Fort Wayne operations.
Ruoff Mortgage Headquarters timeline
Ruoff announced plans to move its world headquarters to downtown Fort Wayne back in October 2019 and even released renderings of what that facility could look like if built at the corner of Jefferson Blvd. and Ewing St. That would have put it by Parkview Field and Cityscape Flats, but the project never came to pass.
A year later in October of 2020, it was announced that Ruoff would lease space from the Electric Works development on Broadway at the former General Electrics campus. At the time, Ruoff said a “growing portion” of its employees would be relocated to the campus, currently set to open next year.
“While we are still formalizing the strategy around how that space will be utilized, we felt it important to make an investment in the community with this project, which has garnered incredible support and excitement,” Music told WANE 15 at the time.
Thursday, he confirmed the Electric Works commitment remains regardless of what happens on Bass Rd.
“Our involvement with EW doesn’t change at all. In fact one of my executive team members had a meeting down there just this morning. We only committed to 15,000 sf in Electric Works to show our support for the project. We plan to have our Mortgage Loan Servicing unit based in the space we lease on the Electric Works campus,” he messaged to WANE 15.
It was then announced in March 2021 that Ruoff expected to hire 700 employees by the end of 2022, many of whom would be working out of Fort Wayne in sales, sales support and information technologist positions. The company said at that time it was still looking for potential locations to accommodate the growth and hoped to have an announcement by late spring. However, that announcement never came.