I'm well aware that most of us fancy ourselves smart shoppers. Whether we are buying a car, groceries, looking for the next Gas Station, sorting through bids on our next Home Improvement Estimate, shopping cell phone carriers...etc... we want the best deal. We want it cheap and efficient.
After over 7 years of being in the Mortgage Business and learning from and being trained by folks who have been in the business since Jimmy Carter took office, I've learned two things. Like any job, this can be frustating as hell, but I absolutely love what I do. I've also learned how to shop smart! I'm only licensed in Pennsylvania and have friends & family outside the confines of where I can lend, they count on me to guide them accordingly.
That written, I want to pass some of my own personal thoughts on how you as a consumer can shop smart to make certain you are getting the best Mortgage for your needs. I'd ask for a drum roll but realize you have better things to do ... so I'll get to it.
5 Ways of Shopping Smart For A Mortgage:
- Begin the conversation with any Mortgage Company/Direct Lender/Bank with the following question, "What's your Interest Rate?" If the person on the other end quotes you a rate, hang up! Well, don't hang up ... that's kind of rude, just say thank you and you'll get back in touch with them. If you are being quoted a rate without them knowing anything about your financial situation, credit score and history, short and long-term goals, they aren't doing their job and won't be doing your situation any justice at all.
- Education is always key. While I love to know the what's in what I'm shopping for, I demand to know the why's of what is available and at what price. Look for a teacher, not a preacher. If they use the two ears they have and listen, what comes out of their mouth becomes all that more important. Your goals and desires and needs are on the line, seek out an advocate of those very things.
- There's another question you should ask, "How do you make your money?" In any 'sales' occupation, this tends to throw some off if the consumer dares to ask that question of the Professional. Ask that question though, it's relevant. If they are doing right by you, they are earning every penny. The price you will be paying for this service will be worth its weight ten times over on one of the biggest financial transactions you will ever partake in.
- When narrowing down who you want to make application with, my suggestion is to narrow it down to three entities. Ask a family member, friend or co-worker to refer you someone they had a good experience with. Go to the bank you hold your depositories (checking & savings accounts) with. Finally, do your own leg work by making a few calls and Internet inquiries, you'll want to shop with at least one Mortgage Broker. Use your gut to get a feel for the guy or gal who just clicks with you and your needs.
- Service & Availability. This is a huge one! Answering emails, returning calls, meeting with you at their office, being there every step of the way and beyond your loan closing ... that's probably the person you'll want to deal with. Having someone to inform you every step of the way and call just to say, "How the heck are you?" is something special & human. I don't know about you, but I want to go shopping at a place that is special and quite human. In the end, those folks tend to treat you the exact same.
First Choice Equity Group Inc.
610-439-2166 ext. 229
Toll Free @ 1-866-262-8720 ext. 229
Licensed with the Pennsylvania Department of Banking