Choosing the right Mortgage Broker is going to make a difference
The process of making any major purchase has the potential to be complicated, and getting a mortgage is no different. There are several steps involved in the process of securing a mortgage, and depending upon the mortgage broker, or banker you have chosen to help arrange for your mortgage, the process of getting yourself a mortgage can be a straightforward, and simple process -or a complicated, and stressful mess. Nearly all mortgage brokers have access to the same rates, mortgage lenders, and products -but what separates them is their competence, and ability to calmly walk you through the various steps involved in getting your mortgage. The purpose of this article is to provide you with an easy to follow, 5 point checklist of things to look out for when interviewing your next mortgage broker.
1. Product Knowledge.
Just because the majority of mortgage brokers have access to the same products, doesn’t mean that you would end up getting the exact same mortgage using every mortgage broker. The job of a mortgage broker is to not only get you a mortgage with the lowest rate, but to get you a mortgage that will suit you the best, and carry the lowest overall cost over its life. The cost of a mortgage goes beyond rate, as discussed here. In order to find you the lowest cost option, a mortgage broker needs to be aware of the differences between the various products in the market, and more importantly, they should be able to concisely explain the differences between those products to you. When interviewing a mortgage broker, ask them questions about their product. Ask them why certain products are better/worse than others, and what differentiates mortgage ‘A’ from mortgage ‘B.’ If you are getting answers that don’t make sense, move on.
2. Attention to Detail.
Your mortgage will likely be the single largest debt you will ever have in your life. That being the case, accuracy is going to matter. Your mortgage broker is going to need to be able to sift through the vast array of information that you provide them with, and organize it in a format that will minimize the complexity of securing your mortgage by focusing on the details that matter, and drilling down to secure all the necessary information. When interviewing a mortgage broker, if you don’t find them asking you nearly as many questions as you are asking of them, that could be a sign of inexperience.
Quick Mortgage Broker Tip:
3. Communication Skills.
Can this person describe what they do, and why it should be important to you in a thoughtfully concise, and organized manner. Most people refer to this moment as an ‘elevator pitch.’ Tell me what you do, and why it is important to me in 30 seconds or less. The ‘elevator pitch’ matters because it will help you understand if the mortgage broker you are interviewing really believes in the service(s) they are providing, and most often, during the ‘elevator pitch,’ the mortgage broker will provide you with some explanation of what differentiates his/her services from those offered by the many other mortgage brokers in your area.
Ease of access is going to be important not just for when you originally set up your mortgage at the time of purchasing/refinancing your home, but for the entire life of your mortgage. Over the next 6 months, 3 years, or even 10 years you will likely have questions about your mortgage(changing payments, making extra payments, renewing your mortgage, using equity for renovations vacations or university tuition, etc), and having convenient access to your mortgage broker will be incredibly important. When choosing a mortgage broker, you want to find out what their hours of operation are, location of their office, and ask the mortgage broker questions about their post registration service.
Knowing who you are dealing with is important when choosing a mortgage broker. Visiting the Better Business Bureau, looking up testimonials on the company’s website and third party websites, and ‘Googling’ the mortgage broker you are interviewing will help you choose a mortgage broker that you feel most comfortable with.
Choosing the right broker is incredibly important, since the arrangement(s) made by your mortgage broker will likely effect your financial health for the next few years. Take the time to interview your mortgage broker, and with these 5 easy to follow steps, you will be able to look for those most important of differentiating factors.