Home-buying 101: how to choose the right mortgage lender
Shopping around for a mortgage lender is more than just about choosing the ‘best’ rate.
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While it’s only natural to be driven by the numbers (especially if you happen to be a math teacher)—when it comes to deciding which lender to give your mortgage business to, don’t be in a rush to sign on the dotted line until you’re sure the top contender is offering you a mortgage that answers ALL your needs.
That means you’ll FIRST have to determine WHAT those needs are:
- Cash flow: Does your cash flow tend to be extra tight in the summer months? If so, will the lender be able to offer you the option of maximizing your cash flow during the months you need it most? Here are 5 tips to boost cash flow by up to $500 a month.
- Mortgage prepayments: Will you want to make prepayments once or twice a year? Maybe more? If that’s the case, then you’ll want to make sure the lender won’t charge you penalties for making any prepayments. Learn 3 simple strategies to pay off your mortgage years faster.
- Peace of mind: Are you the type of person who likes to be prepared to cover all of your expenses in case of an emergency? Let’s say your district decides to take strike action during collective bargaining, or your spouse has to take time off work. You may need to research mortgage options that enable you to skip a few payments to lessen the financial burden, if and when an emergency situation comes up. Here’s how to prepare for sudden financial challenges.
Next, create a list of questions to ask a potential lender, such as:
- Do I have the option of making prepayments without penalties?
- What kind of fees am I looking at if I decide to break my mortgage/sell my home before the end of the term?
- How familiar are you with the financial needs of education members?
- Are there any additional fees/commissions that I should know about?
Also, be sure to reach out to more than one prospective mortgage lender.
Just as you would want a second or even a third opinion for any medical situation, meeting with more than one mortgage lender gives you a better idea of whether the information will be consistent among all lenders.
Plus, you’ll want to do research like:
- Comparing the latest posted rates of each lender
- Carefully looking over the mortgage features to see if your needs are covered
Don’t have time researching multiple lenders and rates? Consider working with a mortgage broker.
The main benefit of working with a brokerage like Educators Financial Group, is that they save you the time and headache of having to do all the research yourself.
Plus, mortgage brokers have regular contact with a wide variety of lenders, some of whom you may not even know about. This means they may also be able to get special rates from these lenders due to the volume of business generated…rates that might be lower than you can get on your own.
If the mortgage needs of education members were developed into a lesson, you would get the master class with Educators Financial Group.
Having worked exclusively with education members for over 45 years, we understand everything from your pay grid and pension to the unique financial challenges you face. With that rich history and experience within the education community, you can feel confident that your mortgage needs are in good hands with us.
Let us be your lender of choice. Have one of our mortgage agents contact you to learn more about the benefits of choosing Educators for your mortgage needs.
Be sure to check out other articles in our ‘Home-Buying 101’ series:
- The 4 essential pieces to pre-mortgage homework
- Uncovering the hidden costs of buying
- The lowdown on making the down payment
- 5 tips on how to budget after you’ve bought
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The information provided is general in nature and is provided with the understanding that it may not be relied upon as, nor considered to be, the rendering of tax, legal, accounting or professional advice. Please ensure to consult your accountant and/or legal advisor for specific advice related to your circumstances. Educators Financial Group will not be held responsible or liable for any losses, costs, damages or expenses incurred by reason of reliance as a result of the aforementioned information. The information presented was obtained from sources that are believed to be reliable. However, Educators Financial Group cannot guarantee their completeness or accuracy.