Quick Tips—How to Choose a Lender

If you want to get a mortgage, you’re going to need a mortgage lender. Fortunately, the current mortgage market has an absolute wealth of lenders to choose from: lenders that focus on low rates, on low fees, or refinances, and the list goes on. As a result, it can be very difficult to find a lender that’s just right for you. Here are some tips to help you choose the perfect lender.

 

The first thing you’ll want to do is connect with a loan officer—a loan officer is invaluable for the most important purchase most people make in their lifetime. You’ll be talking with your loan officer a lot, so make sure you get along with him or her, and make sure that you are comfortable asking your loan officer lots of questions. For many, the best way to find a loan officer that they click with is to ask friends and family if they would recommend their previous loan officer. In short, getting the right loan officer is integral to finding the right lending company.

 

Another thing to do is learn what the lenders you are interested in specialize in. Some lenders advertise really low rates, but depending on your credit score this could come with higher fees. Other lenders are the opposite; their rates might not be as good, but they keep fees and points very low. If you already have a solid loan officer, your loan officer can help you understand what these differences mean and how they will affect your finances.

 

Another area of specialty, some lenders specialize in home purchases while others focus on refinances. (“Refinance” means “to replace an existing mortgage loan with a new mortgage loan with different terms,” usually a lower rate.) Make sure that your lender specializes in the right type of loan—for example, you’ll probably get a better rate from a lender that focuses on home purchases, rather than a lender that focuses on refinances, if you want to buy a home.

 

Finally, learn what other options the lender provides above and beyond just the mortgage. Does the lender have a good relationship with inspection or appraisal companies and can recommend the best? Does the lender offer down payment assistance or closing cost assistance? What other special tools or programs does the lender offer to help that company stand out from the crowd? These are often the final details that edge out one lender ahead of all others.

 

This list of suggestions is by no means exhaustive, but it can be useful to help you narrow down your list of preferred lenders to the one that is right for you.

 

One final tool for your toolbelt—if you are specifically looking for a lender that offers Chenoa Fund down payment assistance, you can get help by emailing info@chenoafund.org. Include your state and county if you want to receive a short list of lenders in your area, or include the lenders that you are already interested in if you want to learn if any of them are approved to offer Chenoa Fund.

 

Getting a mortgage can be hard, but it doesn’t have to be harder than it needs to be. With the right research ahead of time to find the perfect lender for you, you can help make your mortgage journey flow smoothly and easily.