Who is your typical customer and what questions do they typically have?
The only thing about my customers is that there is no typical customer. I've provided financing for borrowers who bought their dream home overlooking Central Park to the 1st Time Buyers who cried when they found out they were approved for financing. And I've financed probably very type of transaction in between those two extremes!
What specific steps do you use to help your customers find the best home loan for them?
I try to ask a lot of questions to help provide the right answers for each buyer. For example, an Interest Only option may not be the best fit for most people, but for the people who rely on large bonuses each year it could be a great option. For other people, they know they are buying a starter home and fully expect to move out in a few years. For these buyers, sometimes an Adjustable Rate Mortgage makes the ownership more affordable and allows them to pay less money for the shorter time frame in which they expect to sell their home.
What are the pros and cons of a fixed rate mortgage versus an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)?
For most people, the fixed rate option is still the best mortgage. With people who don't expect to move in the next few years, and who are paid by salary, the fixed rate option will provide a stable, predictable payment. For those people who expect to move in the near future (5-7 years), or who have variable income (i.e., bonus, commission, self-employment) the lower rate offered by the Adjustable Rate Mortgages (ARMs) may be better option. Because there is potential for the ARMs to increase dramatically (eventually), the decision to go with this product should be one that is weighed carefully.
What part of the home loan process do customers find most difficult and how do you help them through it?
The biggest issue for most borrowers is the documentation process. In most cases, when I first speak with a borrower at the point of pre-approval, I provide them with a list of the necessary documents so that they can take their time to accumulate their documents, rather than scramble to find paperwork once they've entered into a contract to buy a home.
What are the top 3 misconceptions people have about the home loan process?
This answer depends upon the borrower. For example, someone who last financed a property in 2007, will be shocked by the documents now required. Someone buying for the 1st time today, will likely expect to be overwhelmed with the process. The process is fairly predictable, provided that you have a loan officer that can give you the specific details about what you will need to provide in order to get through the process efficiently.
What resources could you recommend that borrowers use to learn more about the mortgage process and how to ensure a successful home closing?
The number one resource for any borrower is the loan officer. Your loan officer should be candid about the process, the paperwork, the rates and costs for your transaction. If you accurately receive this information up front, it will likely be a good transaction for you.
What provides you with the most satisfaction in your job as a Loan Officer?
A happy buyer! When people are really excited to get into their new home, and grateful that I was able to offer a great rate and a great process along the way, it gives me a great deal of satisfaction.
What do you enjoy doing most in your spare time when you are not helping people with their home loans?
My hobbies include Platform Tennis, skiing, hiking, but also like to experience all the things that New York has to offer.
Tell us something that makes you unique or something wacky, yet interesting about you?
I think one of the things that make me unique is my knowledge and love of New York State- NYC to the Finger Lakes - I probably have a sense of the state that few can match.