Which would you rather do: sit through hour after hour of binge-watching reality television or apply for a mortgage? For many of us, the mortgage application process is so gruelling as to almost make it not worthwhile. We put ourselves through it only because there is no other way to buy a house.
Fortunately, the mortgage application experience doesn’t have to be so bad. Your ticket to the fastest, cheapest, most efficient mortgage is to skip the banks and building societies. Do not waste your time jumping through hoops for them. Instead, get your mortgage through an independent mortgage broker.
The point of this post is to introduce you to why using a mortgage broker is such a smart idea. Once you understand that, you will be able to play the mortgage game like a pro. Better yet, you’ll be able to play to win.
A hypothetical scenario when taking out a mortgage
Let us use a hypothetical scenario to get the ball rolling. You are ready to move out of your parents’ house and into your own place. You have saved up a significant down payment, you’ve spent years nurturing your credit report, and you have all of the documentation ready to go. You have even been at your job long enough to satisfy any lender fears.
Now, you can choose to go down to the bank or do business through an online mortgage broker recommended by a friend. You’re intrigued by the latter option, so you take a good long look at this mortgage broker’s website. You like what you see. Are you going to make a move, or are you going to do what your parents suggested: take a day off from work so you can go meet with the bank loan officer?
A broker will save you time
Take your business to the bank and you can expect to have to make a tremendous time commitment. Expect to sit with the loan officer just to get things rolling. After that, expect to spend time gathering documentation, answering e-mails, making phone calls, etc. Finally, expect to wait a while as your application slowly works its way through the underwriting process.
The fact is that banks are notoriously slow because they have no incentive to not be. On the other hand, brokers lose money when they waste time. They have every reason to get mortgage applications processed as quickly as possible. That is how they get paid!
Mortgage brokers are faster all the way around. But if you choose an online broker, the process should be even better. Working through an online broker lets you do things on your schedule. It eliminates having to send things through the mail. It allows for instantaneous communication between you and your broker.
Questions on brokers and mortgages:
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Once a mortgage broker has completed the loan agreement, they typically get paid in the form of a commission by the mortgage lender, typically in the range of 1 to 2 percent of the total amount of the loan. Alternatively, a mortgage broker may be paid with a loan origination fee, typically between 1 to 2 percent of the total loan amount.
Hiring a mortgage broker can generally be a worthwhile endeavour, as even small differences in mortgage rates can end up saving you thousands of pounds in interest rates over the lifetime of a mortgage. Moreover, a mortgage broker can potentially have access to mortgage lenders and loan products which are not very well known to consumers.
A broker will save you money
Saving time is all well and good, but what about money? No worries. A broker will save you money in almost every case. That savings is achieved by comparing as many deals as necessary to find you the best one. Do not count on banks to do that for you. They won’t.
Banks stick with a limited number of mortgage products. They have no reason to do anything different. As far as they are concerned, a ‘take it or leave it’ philosophy is just fine for mortgage lending. But mortgage brokers don’t work that way. Indeed, they cannot afford to.
Mortgage brokers earn a living by matching borrowers with those lenders most likely to make a loan offer. It is in their best interests to find the best possible match in every case. If they cannot find a good deal, the customer will take his or her business elsewhere, right? Right. So keeping customers happy is a matter of finding the best deal every time.
Mortgage brokers earn a living by matching borrowers with those lenders most likely to make a loan offer.
In all likelihood, a broker is going to be able to find you the best interest rate. He or she will find you the best terms, the best LTV, and so forth. You may have to make some compromises to find the best overall package, but a mortgage broker is the most qualified person to find that package.
Go with a broker
If you haven’t figured it out by now, playing the mortgage game like a pro means bypassing banks and building societies and going straight to a mortgage broker. A broker is to mortgage lending what Amazon is to retail: an expert with the skill, knowledge, and choices to get you just what you want.
In closing, it makes no sense to limit yourself to what a single bank or building society offers. Playing to win means taking advantage of every available opportunity. That is what a mortgage broker can do for you.