Here are the results from a recent internet search for the following terms:
- “mortgage” 736,000,000
- “mortgage loan” 50,300,000
- “mortgage refinance” 23,200,000
Wow! I knew the results would be huge, but I have to admit that these numbers were even bigger than I expected. It is important for consumers to understand that many of the websites that rank high in these searches are not lenders at all. More importantly, many of these sites have their own best interests at heart—not yours. What are some of the risks consumers face when dealing with unknown sites?
- Identity theft—it is simply too risky to share personal information on websites that are not well known. The impact of identity theft can be devastating for years to come.
- Harassment—many of the sites that rank highly for mortgage related searches are so-called lead generators. A mortgage lead-generator’s goal is to use mortgage information, of dubious quality, including published rates and “request a quote” language, to lure consumers to provide enough personal information so that the information can be sold to 3-4 different lenders. These lenders will then begin contacting the unsuspecting consumer repeatedly, as many as 8-10 times per lender!
- Bad Deals—Mortgage rates quoted on many sites are simply pulled out of thin air. A true, accurate rate quote can only be provided to a consumer after more information is known about their situation than is possible through a short form on a website. Many consumers, lured to a site by search results and meaningless advertised rates, end up with a bad deal.
- Bad Service—Lenders who buy leads from a mortgage lead-generating site can be located anywhere in the US. This can mean that the consumer has limited means of checking up on the reputation of the lender and the loan originator with whom they are working on a major financial transaction. Often these lenders have poor customer-service and they have no fear of word-of-mouth reputation damage in their community.
Mortgage Master, Inc. is a direct, community-based lender. When you visit our website or call one of our offices you will be working with experienced mortgage professionals whose number one goal is to help you make the best mortgage decision for your unique circumstances. All of our employees, from the person who answers the phone, to the person who locks the doors at night, live in the communities where our branch offices are located. Our commitment is to our fellow citizens, neighbors, friends and families. You don’t need millions of search results to tell you that type of foundation makes for service you can trust.
Senior Loan Officer
NJ LIC #0749868 PA LIC #27282