The Importance of Finding a Great Lender
When you are buying a home, you will be spending lots of time talking to your lender. You need to find someone that you trust and whose lending institution has a good process. My personal banking is with a bigger bank in town and I love my personal bankers, but I would never get a mortgage with this bank because of that bank’s process. Here are some good questions to ask when you are looking for a lender.
Is your underwriting local? This may be the most important question. Large banks and even some “local” banks have their underwriters in a different state. Your file is just another in a huge pile and they have no personal connection or motivation. Often different underwriters will review it and this will mean even more paperwork you are required to provide and a much longer time frame to get the loan closed. A local lender who uses a local underwriter will have a relationship with them and the loan process moves at a much faster pace.
What are your fees? How much will it cost me to get the loan?
What are your interest rates?
Do you have any special programs that can help me get my home? 100% financing? Grants? Lower PMI (private mortgage insurance)?
How do you communicate with your client and with my realtor? You can have a lender with great rates and fees, but if they don’t communicate with you well, it will be a very frustrating process.
How often do you have to extend the original closing date? I.e. do you close most of your loans on time? It is so frustrating to have to rearrange moving preparations and negotiate again with the seller over the closing date just because of a lender issue.
How fast can we close? If you want to move quickly, this is a very important question.
Do you work only bankers hours? Some lenders will only help you during normal business hours. Often you are looking at homes over the weekend and you need a pre approval
Here are some of my preferred lenders:
Charlie Fleming - Movement Mortgage. Can basically have you qualified before you find your home (can get all your docs to underwriting on the front end). 404-213-2447
John Ragland - Supreme Lending. Really good at getting trickier lending situations closed (self-employed, so-so credit). Fantastic communication. 770-335-6373
Jenny Terrell - First American bank. Local processing and underwriting. Low fees and cost to originate the loan. Excellent communication and customer service. 706-354-5083 (office); 706-206-2436 (cell).