How to Select a Mortgage Lender
You’re buying a new home! Your home search may have taken you from vibrant main streets to quiet cul-de-sacs and leafy country lanes. You may have looked at dozens of handsome ranches and stately Colonials, vintage Victorians and trendy townhouses. And finally, you’ve found that perfect place to call home. But don’t celebrate just yet, because the search isn’t over. Now it’s time to figure out how to select a mortgage lender. Specifically, you need to know how to pick a mortgage lender that offers more than just a low interest rate so that buying a home is as easy and stress-free as possible.
You already know you need a home loan, but where should you look for the best mortgage lenders in OH, IN or MI, when the choices are seemingly endless? Here are some tips for savvy consumers interested in selecting a mortgage lender:
Starting Your Mortgage Lender Research
- Seek recommendations from friends or relatives who have been through the process, or from professionals such as financial advisors, attorneys or real estate agents.
- Check out online reviews of various lenders.
Understand What Differentiates Mortgage Lenders
- After narrowing the field, contact loan officers at select institutions to get a sense of the personal attention you’ll receive. The local loan officers at First Federal Bank take time to listen to your specific needs and goals while forming a meaningful relationship with you.
- Go beyond the interest rates and get a detailed breakdown of mortgage closing costs. Fees paid for home appraisals, title searches, legal services and interest rate reductions (known as “discount points”) can total thousands of dollars. First Federal Bank and other lending institutions provide loan estimate documents allowing consumers to compare these costs.
- Timeliness is another factor. Most lenders will lock in the interest rate that’s in effect at the beginning of the application process. Find out how long the rate lock-in period lasts. If you have a deadline for moving, you’ll also want to know how quickly the mortgage lender will make a decision on your application and then set a closing date. Ask the lender how long it usually takes to get to closing.
Get the Details
- Loan officers have a wide range of training and experience. The loan officers at First Federal Bank can expertly analyze your financial situation and offer appropriate mortgage options that fit your lifestyle and budget. Would a fixed mortgage for 15 years suit you more than a standard 30-year loan? Might you qualify for government programs that offer lower rates to veterans or favorable terms to first-time homebuyers? We’ll help you figure out everything and recommend the best mortgage for you.
- Find out whether the mortgage lender services its own mortgages or sells them to larger financial institutions. If your loan will be sold, it could be more difficult to track down someone who can help you with any future problems.
Knowing how to choose a mortgage lender in Ohio, Indiana or Michigan can take a little work, but it’s definitely worth investigating all the options. After all, you’re not just trying to get a good mortgage, you’re taking a necessary step toward moving into your dream home.
If you’re interested in learning more about the mortgage options at First Federal Bank, check out our low mortgage rates and find your local mortgage rep today.