Just as a REALTOR will help you find the right home out of the many options, a mortgage broker will help you with the right loan for you. There are many options when it comes to loans and a good mortgage broker will make recommendations for you based on your individual situation. They will guide you through the process and educate you on the financial markets and how they pertain to you.
Interview prospective loan providers:
When it comes to loan providers, it’s a great idea to shop around. A great step in the selection process is to ask your mortgage broker the following questions, but this is by no means a comprehensive list of questions:
- Ask them how they are paid for their services and how much it will cost you.
- Ask how long they have been providing mortgage services and how long they have been providing the specific type of loan you are seeking, for example, if you are interested in FHA or VA loans, your mortgage broker should have direct experience with these types of loans.
- Ask them to explain the Good Faith Estimate, Truth In Lending, Appraisal Report and HUD Settlement documents to you or to provide samples of these documents so you can familiarize yourself with them. Even if you have financed a home in the past, this is a good idea as the forms have recently changed dramatically.
- Ask the mortgage provider what fees are due in advance of closing and ask how much you will need at closing.
- Ask for references, credentials and qualifications. Ask them if they hold a current license with the State of Washington. I do not recommend you work with a lender that is not familiar with the Greater King & Pierce County local real estate customs.
- Ask if they broker or farm out their services or if they handle everything in-house? Beware; if they broker the loan service to another provider this can cause delays in closing and extra processing time and procedures.
- To avoid considerable stress make sure they can commit to having the final loan documents available for you to sign at least 7 days before closing.
Learn the power of interest rates:
Interest rates play a huge part of how much house you can afford. Currently interest rates are low and this means that your buying power is considerable. As interest rates rise, so do your payments. Additionally, rising rental rates are attributed to rising interest rates as the cost of the payments determine how much landlords need to charge in order to make a profit. See a chart of the history of interest rates here:
The mortgage broker is there for you. I recommend you keep a pad of paper around so that when you have questions you can jot them down and review with your mortgage provider when you are together.
You might want to visit: www.wamb.org (the Washington Association of Mortgage Professionals)
Joseph Tafolla ~ Loan Simple
Keith Akada~The Mortgage Reel
Cindy M. Fraioli ~ Guild Mortgage Company
Dexter Wellington – 1st Security Bank