|Choosing the Right Mortgage Broker|
Chances are, you got a few references before you chose a doctor.
You asked friends and coworkers, looked around, and ultimately
decided on the person who was right for you. You need to trust your
doctor with your health. Most likely, you followed a similar process
when choosing a sitter for your child.
Shouldn't you do the
same for your mortgage broker, the person who manages the money you
need to make the biggest investment of your life?
people ready to put an offer on a house take the card offered by
their real estate agent too quickly. The agent may put in a quick
"she's good," but this hardly counts as a reference. Buyers call the
number cold, putting decisions, responsibility, and profit into the
hands of someone they do not even know.
Don't make that
mistake. Instead, when you're thinking about number of bathrooms and
kitchen floor plans, think about what type of mortgage broker is
right for you. One size may not fit all.
Consider what you
want in a mortgage broker:
When talking with friends and family, ask
them who they have used for their mortgage broker and if they were
happy. Tap the members of your financial team such as your
accountant, financial manager, or tax preparer. Then, take the time
to talk to the person you are considering. You're opening up your
private financial books to this person; he or she is worth at least
a quick interview. Make sure it's someone whose style works for
- Are you a "number cruncher" who knows exactly what you can
afford and can figure out a monthly payment lickety split? If so,
you may just need a broker who can be a liaison between you and a
mortgage company. Find someone who is quick and efficient.
- Do you know what you wish you could afford, but not quite sure
what will work with your budget? A mortgage broker ready to roll
up his or her sleeves and look at your budget would be your best
choice. Look for someone who is thoughtful, interested in your
life, and willing to put in some time.
- Is this your first mortgage and the idea of a 30- year bill
makes you want to quickly flip to the Apartments section of the
newspaper? You'll likely benefit from a mortgage broker who can
hold your hand throughout the process, explain everything to
you from escrow to adjustable rate, and accommodate your
The three most important components of people's lives
are their children, their time, and their money. You choose your
child's care very carefully. You work hard to get the most out of
your time. Show your money the same respect and think hard about who
will broker your mortgage. After all, you'll probably live with your
mortgage longer than you'll live with your children.
|June's Home Value Improver|
Upgrade Your BAthroom for Comfort and
Real estate agents may say that location, location,
and location are the three most important things to consider when
buying a house. But buyers will tell you that bathrooms and kitchens
follow closely behind. When you compare them to bathrooms and
kitchens, the rest of the rooms in a house are just slight
variations on four walls.
Bathroom -- its dull name belies
its importance to your home. Your bathroom is where you bathe,
primp, and relax. It's where your guests get to take a private look
into your life. If you take the time and money to improve your
bathroom, you'll upgrade your quality of life while boosting your
Experts estimate that a bathroom upgrade can
give you a 70% return on your investment, and a full renovation can
give you a 100% return. If selling isn't in your near future, a
bathroom upgrade can give you a 100% increase in pleasure when
you're brushing your teeth, styling your hair, or soaking in the
If a bathroom addition or upgrade is not in your
future, try some simple steps. To improve your bathroom's look and
your house's value, consider:
- Add some color to the vanity. A coat of paint can be an
aesthetic lifesaver to a bathroom vanity that has seen better
- Change the cabinet panels. Frosted glass in your cabinet
panels will open up the area, while a stenciled design with give
you artistic appeal.
- Get some new hardware or fixtures. A vast array of fixtures
are available to transform the look of your vanity area.
- Add stylish furniture to the room. You can take a favorite
chest of drawers and turn it into a bathroom vanity. A
cabinetmaker can fit it for a sink, and add a good-looking granite
- Change the window treatments. A new set of curtains can make a
dramatic change in the look and feel of a bathroom.
- Paint the walls and add beadboard. Not much changes a room
like a fresh, bright coat of paint. Attach some beadboard that you
pick up at the hardware store, and you have just made your
bathroom look "richer."
I may not be the right mortgage broker for you. That may sound
like a funny statement to make in my monthly newsletter, which goes
to prospects and clients. But it's true, and here's why.
Every buyer has different needs, expectations and
approaches. And I have a specific approach to the way I work with
clients. If the two don't match, we're in for a rough ride. That's
why it's so important to take the time to assess your style and then
ask prospective brokers the questions that will help determine if
your approach and their style will be a good fit. This month's
article should help with the process.
I'm always happy to
answer your questions about mortgages. Consider me your mortgage
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