No matter who you talk to, they will tell you there are two key steps to buying a home. Those two things are determining whether to secure financing or not and determining which type of financing is best for you.
These are key because when you are the buyer in the housing market, there are several places and options to consider. One such avenue is through mortgages, which offer a plethora of ways for you to buy a home through. We’ll be focusing on mortgages overall, as this is often what people decide to go with.
But the thing is that there is a mortgage and a broker out there and you need to find one that’s ideal for your situation.
For mortgages, it’s a matter of looking at the mortgages that fit your goals – a simple thing if you take the time to read. But a mortgage broker is a whole other matter. So, to help you out, we wanted to list the five most important considerations to make when selecting your broker.
Why Work With A Mortgage Broker?
But before we get to that, it’s important to know why you want to deal with these individuals to begin with. The first thing to remember is that while there are definitely mortgages that work in many banks, they act independently of banks and other financial institutions.
In fact, you can see them more as your agents to find a suitable lender. They’re the ones doing all the legwork for you, rather than you bothering to do it all yourself. They also work to find the best mortgage rates, terms, and conditions that fit your needs and goals.
Overall, a mortgage broker should be helping you with:
- Finding the best mortgages that focus on your financial position and goals.
- Looking for and explaining the various financing options that you’ve got or can get.
- Working with you every step of the way to get a mortgage approved.
- Finishing the loan application.
Beyond that, the broker should be reviewing the loan documents before signing them, as well as coordinate property appraisal, and act as a middle person between you and the lender until closing day happens.
As you can tell already, they’re with you every step of the way and act in your own best interests. Even though you are paying them for this work, this can save you a lot of time and money in the long term. This comes at such a crucial time where home ownership is picking up and more people are moving around.
What Should You Look For In A Mortgage Broker?
If we’ve convinced you to consider a mortgage broker to help you, the next thing to do is to look for a mortgage broker that is suitable for you. On top of the broker’s willingness to do everything that’s mentioned above – which is the bare minimum of their duty if we’re being honest – you want to look for these particular aspects of the broker:
- That you’re able to research the chosen broker.
- That they’re willing to meet you in-person.
- That they’re open to questions.
- That they’re recommended by other people.
- And – that you can contact them.
While these are simple things, we’ll go into detail about why these are so important.
Evaluating Your Brokers
When researching brokers in your area, you want to be able to gather as much information about them as you can. Are these individuals credible? Have they won anything? Are they present on social media? Do they have a website? Have you seen them out in the community?
Are they well known in the town?
All these questions matter, as they determine much about the broker’s character before you get to know them any further – at least on a professional level. Answering “yes” to those questions above will indicate an air of legitimacy to them.
Another factor you want to consider is whether or not the broker is either licensed and listed or not. What this means is that the broker is registered through the Financial Services Commission in your homeplace or location. These provide a directory of licensed professionals in your area. This further solidifies that the chosen brokers is legitimate.
Meeting Them In Person
After looking into a broker company’s background, the next thing is being able to meet a mortgage broker in person. This shouldn’t be a complicated thing, but this indicates that you’re interested in working with them and it can give you a window of what it’ll be like working with them.
Meeting a broker in person will give you the opportunity to ask more questions upfront and determine whether or not they’re up to speed with the mortgage industry as well. Even if your mortgage knowledge is narrow, it pays to know at least a little about the subject.
On top of testing their professional skills, you can also test to see how attentive they are to your concerns and whether they’re invested in you or not. Furthermore, how resourceful they are as a broker should be clear if they are able to answer questions with clarity and confidence.
Asking The Important Questions
On top of the other questions you’ve got, you’ll also want to ask about a few other important things that’ll give you a more informed decision about them. These questions will also help you in making informed decisions about your financial future. Key things you should know by the end of the discussion are:
- Who their lenders are.
- Why they are choosing to work with those particular lenders over others.
- An idea of what their application process looks like.
- What their mode of compensation is.
Also note that when they mention the lenders, jot the names down and check to see if these are reputable and accredited.
Checking For References
Your ideal broker should be keeping up with the times and at least have a social media page(s).
From those, you should be able to get plenty of opinions from other people about the broker you’re dealing with. On top of that, many brokers will have references on their website that talk about them in further detail too.
With all of this at your fingertips, you’ll be able to piece together more about your to-be broker and whether their values align with their abilities.
You can also ask around town as well, depending on where you live. Even in densely populated places, people know people and you may be able to get some word of mouth with some local brokers.
Having An Open Conversation
On top of meeting a mortgage broker in person and asking key questions, the overall conversation should be an open one. Yes, there is a lot of thought going into which broker to deal with, but that’s to be expected. This is a time-consuming process and there is plenty of money on the line as well.
If you want to be saving money in the long-term, it pays to be meticulous about this.
Once you’ve done all that, go and make that call and trust your own gut instinct when talking things out.