It's a Loan Officer, Not a Serial Killer!

Reblogger Doug Patterson
Real Estate Agent with Park Place Real Estate, Broker-In-Charge

Thanks to Eric Michael for this inciteful post!  Real estate buyers can save alot of time, and yes, alot of heartbreak, if they just find out what they can actually qualify for before they begin their searches.  It's a joy to meet a buyer that has already been pre-approved, because it tells me they are serious about their time and they respect the time that they are going to expect from their real estate agent as well.

Original content by Eric Michael

It's a Loan Officer, Not a Serial Killer!

Scenario #1. You call a real estate agent because you saw a house online and would like more info. Agent describes the house and you get excited, it sounds exactly like what you're looking for. You say, "I gotta see this house! When can we go?" Agent's response, "Have you been in contact with a Loan Officer?"

Scenario #2. You and your spouse have been driving around the city, looking for "for sale" signs in front of houses that you're interested in. This is one of the areas you've always wished you could buy your first house in. House looks great. There's even some young kids playing basketball next door. They seem to be right about the same ages as your kids. Your wife dials the number on the sign. "Hi, this is Eric. How can I help you?" "Um, hi. We were wondering if you could tell us more about the house at 123 Perfect Lane?" After hearing all about the house, you've just gotta see the inside! When you ask, the response is "Do you have a pre-qualification letter from a lender yet?"

Scenario #3. You just got a raise at your job. The lease is just about up on your apartment, and a few of your friends have purchased homes recently. It's your turn. You sign up for lists of homes from a dozen real estate sites. They're all the same lists, but whatever. You thought there might be something special out there and you didn't want to miss it. You find a few that you want to look at. That's when you call your friend, who's been in the business for a while. You tell him that it'll be cool to hang out and look at some homes, maybe get a few beers afterward. Friend agrees and says, "Before we hook up, have you talk to a lender yet? If not, I have a few that I've worked with in the past that I could recommend, because we need to make sure you get pre-approved before we start looking at homes."

See the pattern here?

There's a reason that we want you to talk to a Loan Officer before we go out to look at homes. A few reasons, actually.

  • You need to take a look at your credit history. Lenders have minimum credit scores that need to be met before lending money for a house.
  • You might think that you can afford a certain amount, only to learn you have to look at homes that are a lot lower than you thought. Conversely, maybe you can qualify for more than you thought, and your dream house just got a lot nicer. Looking at homes that you could never qualify for is depressing. Trust me.
  • We run a business. We don't get paid unless you purchase a house. If you can't purchase, we can't waste our time, money or resources. It doesn't make business sense.

Debt to income ratios, time on your job and amount needed are a few more things that they Loan Officer will have to figure out before determining how much, and IF you can qualify for a mortgage loan.

Sometimes it's scary to find out what your credit is, or what you can truly afford. Sometimes it's even better to continue renting for a while to save up more money for that down payment or to pay off a few credit cards. The Loan Officer will help determine the best strategy for you.

Ultimately, a trustworthy Loan Officer is an integral part in the house/condo buying process. They can be an ally. As long as you remember, It's a Loan Officer, Not a Serial Killer!


Eric Michael, Real Estate Professional
Remerica Integrity, Realtors
41000 W. 7 Mile #105
Northville, MI 48167

Cell: 734.564.1519

Fax: 248.912.9996

www.ShortSaleInfoMI.com

www.EricMichaelOnline.com

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Rainmaker
733,184
Robert Rauf
HomeBridge Financial Services (NJ) - Toms River, NJ

Doug, all great points!  I always tell my Realtor Partners I would much rather spend a few minute on the phone with their clients before they put them in the car! 
It isnt always "can I qualify"  the even more important question a Good Loan Officer will ask: "where are you comfortable with a monthly payment?"

Even if you cant buy now, another thing a good LO will do for you is give you a road map to follow so you can buy in the future.

Mar 12, 2012 02:21 AM #1
Rainmaker
647,582
Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

There are some really good lessons in your blog. It is not only great for the agent but also the Buyers. It can be so disappointing for a buyer to find out that they don't qualify or could have bought more home if they hsd wanted to.

Betty 

Mar 12, 2012 02:23 AM #2
Rainer
63,224
Doug Patterson
Park Place Real Estate, Broker-In-Charge - Winston-Salem, NC
CRS, ABR, Broker-In-Charge

Robert....You are exactly right....giving a road map to get finances in shape to purchase a home speaks highly of the loan officer.  

Betty,  as agents, we see the disappointment when they can't buy!  It is heartbreaking for them and for their R.E. Agents!

Mar 12, 2012 02:48 AM #3
Rainmaker
544,156
Eric Michael
Remerica Integrity, Realtors®, Northville, MI - Livonia, MI
Metro Detroit Real Estate Professional 734.564.1519

Doug, thanks for re-blogging it! The more we let buyers know what they're supposed to do, the better off we all are!

Mar 12, 2012 03:24 AM #4
Rainer
63,224
Doug Patterson
Park Place Real Estate, Broker-In-Charge - Winston-Salem, NC
CRS, ABR, Broker-In-Charge

Eric,  your message is good and makes clear why this is important for all homebuyers to get that pre-approval letter before going to see homes with their agent.  It is smart and will avoid problems down that road leading to an offer to purchase on a home!  Thanks....

Mar 12, 2012 03:30 AM #5
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Rainer
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Doug Patterson

CRS, ABR, Broker-In-Charge
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