The 1987 Fleetwood Mac chart-topper, “Little Lies,” reminds me of some of the things I am seeing out there when it comes to mortgage quotes from lenders. Take this week as an example; I had a client get quoted on a conventional loan with a 735 score, a 30-year fixed rate of 6.125%, and no points or origination fee. While I am all about being competitive, a .375% margin below the national average and probably more given the credit score and no points… you must ask yourself why would the company quoting the rate be that far below the market??? If they were truly at no points and or origination fee, they would have probably won the deal at 6.50% or even 6.625%.* I’m not saying that the client won’t close with that rate, but it does make you go hmmmmm?
The lender, of course, was an internet lender and not based out of the Atlanta Metro area. I have discussed this before; local lenders have a reputation to maintain in their local markets… however, to the “internet” or non-local lender, you are just another transaction. Choose a local lender when getting a mortgage!
- Check references (Do you know anyone who has done business with them?)
- Google them
- Check their (the loan officer’s) customer surveys
Remember, quotes over the phone need to be verified with a written cost estimate. Rates in today’s market are now being quoted with origination fees and or points in most cases, and the national averages you see published are, in most cases, quoting anywhere from .50 points to 1 full point in discount points or origination fees. You need to double-check once you lock in your rate to make sure you are getting the same deal as was stated to you before. Keep in mind that rates do change daily and need to be verified once you are able to lock in your rate. Remember, 50% of all loan officers in the US left the business in 2023…. the remaining mortgage bankers are doing whatever they can do to hold on in 2024, and that includes the internet desk jockeys. Bottomline… if it seems too good to be true… in most cases, the truth is probably grossly different than what you were told.
Staying in the 1987 timeframe… Here is a quote from the hit TV show Hill Street Blues… “Be careful out there.” Please call me or any of our loan officers with any questions. We are here to help you and or your clients!!! Have a great weekend!!!
Remember… the BEST RATE… IS A LOCKED RATE… with a float down… ask me about our program that allows you to lock your rate and then float down if rates move lower.
Make sure you (or your buyer) get pre-approved before looking at homes so we can determine if you are looking in the correct price range and have you armed to submit an offer with a pre-approval letter!
Thank you for reading this blog. I hope that the facts and insights I share provide value for you.
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*Not an advertisement of rates offered by BankSouth Mortgage.
Blog post date: Thursday, January 4, 2024