The appointment is subject to regulatory approval. Rowntree (pictured) is currently managing director of UK mortgages at Bank of Ireland.
He will succeed John Heron, who is retiring early next year.
Rowntree has previously held roles at the likes of Santander, Lloyds and Halifax. He is currently chairman of UK Finance’s mortgage product board.
Heron said that the lender had seen a number of “exceptional candidates” in its search for a new head for its mortgage business.
He said: “I am delighted that Richard is joining Paragon; he has a great track record with experience at a senior level across a number of mortgage segments and is well known for his excellent work at UK Finance. Importantly, Richard’s values are very closely aligned with Paragon’s and he is well equipped to take the business forward.”