7 points to consider when looking for a mortgage broker...
The mortgage boom is getting homebuyers across the board excited for a new home, but the path to owning that home is a bit complicated. You have to make sure that you’re getting a good deal on your mortgage, which starts with getting a good mortgage broker.
1. Business length matters
Experience makes the difference when it comes to the mortgage industry at large. Your broker should have a solid track record. If they are new, then they should have come from a firm that’s well known for excellence. You don’t want to just go with the person that’s fresh out of school with very little experience in really getting you the best savings on a mortgage. The more knowledgeable your broker is, the better advice that they can give you. By law, they’re required to give you the best advice they can. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you will get the best mortgage in the world if your creditworthiness isn’t up to par. But it does mean that you should e able to trust your broker.
2. Authorization counts too
It’s important to also make sure the broker is properly authorized by the Financial Conduct Authority, the regulating body that makes sure that every broker in the country is kept honest. They review complaints and take them very seriously. A broker that’s found out of compliance can basically lose their right to offer mortgage brokering services.
3. Qualifications are good!
What type of training does your broker have? Do they have a certificate in mortgage advice and practice? Have they gone through any of the Chartered Insurance Institute programs? These are just a couple of the training bodies that would give your mortgage broker the foundation they need to give good advice.
4. Find independents
In our opinion, independent brokers are the best ones to go with; because they can actually help you help the clearest decision. A broker represented by one lender tends to direct people to that lender above all others, which isn’t very fair at all.
5. Insurance makes the difference
Insurance matters when you’ve been burned by bad mortgage advice. If the broker isn’t covered, then you’re in for a big fight. But if they already carry their own insurance, then you’re protected. Most professionals seek being insured properly to assure their clients that they take their professional life seriously.
6. Pay structure is important
Do you want to work with someone that is working on commission or someone that has a set fee? There are advantages to both and downsides to both. If you go with a broker that’s working on commission, then they may steer you to a mortgage that’s larger than what you planned in order to keep their commission as high as possible. It isn’t supposed to be like that, but sometimes it can be difficult to tell when your broker is playing a little too close to the line, if you catch our drift.
It’s the new lender that pays out the broker’s commission. If you want to be assured that you’re getting unbiased advice, then paying an upfront fee is the best way to go.
It might seem a bit rude to ask for references, but you’re going to need them. You should be able to get them to give you references of real people that have used the broker in order to get their mortgage.
Call up the references and actually talk to them directly. If they’re willing to meet you, that’s even better. You want to make sure these people are genuine, and not just shills for the mortgage broker. Get them to reveal as many details as they can before you make your decision. Remember that nothing is final until you’ve signed all of the necessary paperwork.
These points are great ways to flesh out whether or not a mortgage broker is really going to be right for you, but don’t just hear the responses. Study how they react when you ask them questions. Are they unhappy that you’re firing off questions, or do they seem to expect it? A professional knows that a prospect has to feel comfortable before trust can honestly be present.
Don’t think that it’s beyond your ability to ask these questions. Even if they seem resistant to the questions, then you already have your real answer don’t you? Be careful and make sure that you’re looking after your own interests, not everyone else's.