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How to Find a Mortgage Lender or Broker

November 18th, 2022



When homebuying fever hits, it's natural to want to rush the process -- especially if you have an eye on a specific neighborhood or house.

Particularly when just starting out, many buyers worry about merely being approved for a home loan, never mind shopping multiple lenders. You just want that one preapproval so you can get on with finding the perfect home. But you shouldn't rush through picking a lender. Settling for the first approval could cost you thousands of dollars in additional fees and interest.

A little lender shopping can't hurt; after all, you've already got that first preapproval in your back pocket.

The mortgage-lending landscape

The good news: There are plenty of lenders who want to get in front of potential homebuyers.

Mortgage brokers and indirect lenders

Mortgage brokers are middlemen who shop your loan package to several lenders on your behalf, for a fee. They may prefer to work with particular lenders and don't have to offer you the best deal they find, so you probably shouldn't rely solely on one broker.

Be aware that some brokers don't call themselves brokers, and some financial institutions act as brokers without telling you. That can add another layer of fees to the process. Ask your lender specifically how they're paid, whichever type you choose.

Find the best lender for you

Finding lenders near you is easy. And, of course, you'll probably tap into online reviews. Some tips on finding the best lender for you:

What to look for in a lender

Naturally, you'll be looking at interest rates, but right now you want to narrow down your list of players to the finalists. A few questions to help you choose:

You should also ask about experience and even consider asking for references. A simple Google search for reviews will give you an idea of the lender's reputation with borrowers and show whether there have been any complaints.

Still not sure? You can search for a company on nmlsconsumeraccess.org to see whether it is registered in the state in which you're buying your home. You can also search the Better Business Bureau for unbiased reviews and information.

Remember, mortgage lenders want your business; in fact, they need your business. Arming yourself with the attitude that you deserve a loan and are looking to find the best lender for you can make all the difference.


This article originally appeared on NerdWallet.


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Disclaimer : The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Houston Association of REALTORS®

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