While not all homebuyers choose to work with a mortgage broker, those who work with the right broker don’t regret their choices. Commonly understood as the ‘middlemen’ of the home buying process, a broker’s job is to go mortgage shopping on your behalf with the goal of finding you the best rate, terms, and conditions to suit your needs and goals.
Choosing a mortgage broker can be a little overwhelming: there are many brokers out there, many of whom boast the finest credentials and great reviews, but it’s not always easy to tell whether they’ll do a great job for you personally.
Behold 5 signs you’ve found a mortgage broker that will work with your best interests at heart:
They ask questions
Extensive knowledge, experience and skill are all great, but a truly qualified mortgage broker will ask lots of questions—really, there is no other way to match you up with a mortgage that is well suited to your unique situation. They should ask about your credit rating, your plans for the home, and how long you plan to own it, for starters. With this information, a good broker should be able to offer you numerous mortgage options aligned with your requirements.
They answer questions
Strong communication always goes both ways. You should feel as though your questions are answered patiently, thoroughly, and transparently (i.e., with regard to how they are paid, their experience level, or anything about the process you find confusing). Any broker who seems frustrated or hesitant when faced with questions should send up a red flag. You should never feel you’re being rushed through the mortgage process, or that asking questions is excessive.
They specialize in situations like yours
The right mortgage broker for you ideally has knowledge and experience with lending to borrowers in situations much like yours. For instance, if you’re self-employed, you want a broker well-versed in rendering your process as straightforward and hassle-free as it would be for a traditional employee. Similarly, if you’re a veteran, you’ll avoid unnecessary confusion and obstacles by choosing a mortgage broker that regularly deals in VA loans and the scenarios that accompany them.
They always keep you in the loop
In addition to being a strong communicator who asks and answers questions as needed, a good mortgage broker will make a real effort to keep in touch regularly with updates. If your broker is unresponsive or seems to prioritize landing new clients over keeping you posted on what’s happening with your mortgage, they’re probably not the best fit for your needs.
They won’t hesitate to advise you to borrow less
A genuine broker will always remind you of your long term plans, and advise you on how to avoid potential financial pressures or risks—even when it means recommending you borrow less. This is a sure sign that your broker has your best interests at heart and is not just in it for the biggest possible commission. A genuine mortgage broker understands that satisfied customers lead to repeat business, which is ultimately the best kind of win.
Bottom line: you’ll want to vet and interview potential mortgage brokers the way any employer might an employee: can they get the job done? Are their priorities in the right place? The above guide is a strong kicking off point for choosing the right mortgage broker for you.