When buying a home in Spokane, WA, you will likely need a good mortgage lender to provide the up-front funds. Few people buy homes in cash, especially with today’s home prices. A lender makes it possible to buy a house outright upfront from the buyer and then enjoy the house for a decade or three while paying for the full value. You can then sell it to pay the mortgage remainder and enjoy the profits or you can pass it on to your grandchildren. But first, you will need a Spokane mortgage lender.
How do you choose the right one? Choosing a mortgage lender is a big task because the terms of the mortgage will shape your next 15-30 years. The amount of interest, fees, and closing costs you pay will be determined by this decision. So, we’ve put together ten useful tips to help you find the best deal and find the best mortgage lender in Spokane.
Look for a Local Lender
First, stick with local lenders. A lender who does not at least have a branch office open in or near Spokane simply cannot understand the market conditions or provide the attentive homebuying care that you will need to forge a good mortgage for your purchase.
Don’t fall into the trap of a national lender for a local purchase. This is a bank you will be dealing with regarding your new Spokane home for years, so you want a team who are locals and who can be reached, visited, and worked with while you are the homeowner.
The Right Mortgage Interest Rates & Fee Structure
The interest rate matters a great deal to your financial future. This is how much – over time – you will pay the bank for the mortgage in addition to the equity you will pay to own the house. Naturally, you are looking for the lowest possible interest rate without sacrificing other qualities of the loan. A low-interest rate is easier to achieve with a high credit score and a history of paying off loans. However, interest rates offered by lenders vary from one to the next.
You will want to ask about the available interest rates regarding your financial plans and about the fee structure of mortgages. Often, savings are wiped out by surprise fees, even at a lower interest rate.
A Wide Selection of Mortgage Types
Look for lenders who offer several types of mortgages. The best deal for you might be an FHA or a VA loan rather than a standard mortgage loan. Make sure you choose a lender who can help you select a loan type and build a mortgage that is exactly the right size and cost for your needs. Different types of loans have different requirements like being a first-time homeowner, a veteran, or below certain income brackets. With a selection, your qualifications will find the best solution.
Compare Three Lender Estimates
You can get a detailed lender estimate by filling out a mortgage application with a lender. Once the application is submitted, an estimate will be calculated based on your information and returned. Some estimates will be much higher or lower than others, but don’t forget to check the closing costs and fee structures as well.
Apply to at least three Spokane mortgage lenders, then compare the detailed estimates when they arrive. This will help you choose the best mortgage lender in Spokane, WA.
Recommendations From Your Realtor
Not sure which Spokane lender to choose? Ask your realtor. A realtor or real estate agent has worked with dozens – perhaps hundreds – of locals in search of a new home. They can tell you which neighborhoods are hot, but they can also tell you where many of their clients got their funding. Your real estate broker can provide you with some detailed recommendations regarding which lenders have been chosen and preferred by their home-buying clients in the past.
Invested in the Community
Look for a Spokane mortgage lender who is invested in the community. Local credit unions, for example, are often more interested in seeing homes purchased and new land developed for the good of the community itself. This is one of the benefits of choosing a local instead of an international lender. You can find a lender who genuinely wants to see you build a beneficial mortgage loan and become a pillar in the community.
Included or Assisted Closing Costs
Closing costs when buying a home can be killer. They rarely mention closing costs when discussing how to calculate home buying expenses, but there are many. Notarization, legal services, title checks, title changes, and paying your inspectors to do the due diligence all come out of your pocket after the mortgage is finalized. Additional mortgage fees add to the mix; however, some loan packages ease the burden of closing costs.
Some lenders will offer to wrap the closing cost expense (several thousand more dollars) into the loan amount. Some offer a few covered services like title checks or legal contract services. Look for a good offer regarding your closing costs.
Avoid Commission-Based Mortgage Lenders
Try to dodge lenders who sell mortgages via commission. This provides an incentive to your loan officer to rush you through the process instead of carefully selecting each mortgage option that best suits your budget and your needs. A commission-based mortgage lender can be fun but likely is not arranged for your best interests.
Your Application is Pre-Approved
Of course, you are also reliant on lenders who will approve your mortgage application. Of those Spokane mortgage lenders you choose, you must pick one that will approve your mortgage and help you complete the transaction.
They Will Print You Offer-Based Pre-Approval Letters
Finally, look for a Spokane mortgage lender who will print a custom pre-approval letter for every offer you make. This makes it possible to keep your cards close to your chest, not showing your full approved financial amount, when bidding and when negotiating for price and concessions once your bid has been accepted. Offer-based pre-approval letters often have the target home’s address printed on them and make your offer more personalized – and make it easier to keep your prices low by now showing “money on the table” in an approval higher than your current bid.
How do you choose the best mortgage lender in Spokane for your new home purchase? Contact us today to find out more.