Recmmend, or rant about, your mortgage lender

My husband and I are planning to take the plunge into first-time home (actually, probably condo) ownership in the next few months. My dear friend of 10+ years who is our real estate broker recommended a couple of people she’s worked with before, and I have spoken with one of them so far to get an idea of what we can afford, etc.

But we haven’t decided anything at all yet, and I don’t know that the people she recommended will give us the best rates and/or service. So, Dopers, suggest away! Also, feel free to tell us about any unexpected pitfalls you encountered in the mortgage process, or generally any experiences you think would be useful to someone who hasn’t been through the process before.

I believe this is the thread you might like to read.

It is in the Pit, so consider yourself warned.

The consensus is that Wells Fargo sucks.

And there’s always an exception.

I go with my local Wells Fargo because the best mortgage broker I’ve ever worked with in my life works there. She knows her business inside and out. She returns calls & emails promptly. She shows up at meetings organized and knowledgeable. She makes the whole damn thing so easy for me that it would take a lot to get me to ever get a mortgage with anyone but her.

But that’s just one person. I wish I could clone her for you all because I’ve definitely dealt with bad mortgage brokers and nothing sucks more than that.

Already posted there, thanks. :slight_smile:

Sorry didn’t realize! :wink:

I had a good experience with my local small bank, but they then sold the mortgage, so the servicing experience was not as good as the initial mortgage. But for a 1st mtg ever they were very helpful.

We had good luck with Bank of America. We bought a house in February and closed in 21 days. Everything was done online or over the phone. We were first time buyers as well.

Not mine but my boyfriend.

His mortgage lender is Freedom Mortgage. He has had them for 7-8 years and has never had a single complaint about them.

He is in the process of selling/buying and is still going to use them. I don’t know if he’d get a better deal from another lender (the one he got is pretty damn good as it is) but he doesn’t even care to try anyone else. He wants to stay with them.

The contact at Freedom is great too. He’s nice and helpful and I wish dealing with lawyers and sellers was as pleasant as dealing with Kent.

We refinanced our house through LendingTree. I found the process pretty painless. The loan agent came to our house so we could sign the paperwork (although she was mistaken that under Florida law, we needed a witness, so our BIL just sat at the kitchen table watching us.)

I went through E-Option loan and while they got me a fantastically low rate I had to put up with a lot of ire and stress as they switched loan officers on me from a very competent, knowledgeable person to a complete and total airhead. She lost paperwork, had me follow incorrect procedures, and on the day of closing sprung a last minute roadblock from their internal auditors that she knew about from the start. Closing happened a week late, and after that they sold my loan to AmTrust who I’ve been happy with. Had I kept the same loan officer from the start I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them, but their follow-on person really made life hard for me.

My advice in the process would be to send any paperwork/info to them the same day as they ask and pester them regularly to make sure they get it and stay on top of it.

I was so unhappy with Chase that I paid off my mortgage way early, even though it was a financially stupid move. If I had made mistakes like they did, they probably woulda foreclosed.

If either you or your husband has military service, you might be eligible to use USAA. I just used them and they were fantastic.

I won’t use Chase, because I hate them for entirely unrelated reasons.

Neither of us does.

Why would paying off your mortgage early be stupid? If you’re talking about the tax benefits, you can get the same thing by donating to charity.

The specifics of my situation caused it to be (according to my tax babe) a stupid move.

We went with Wells Fargo and didn’t have any problems… closed today. However, unlike the examples in the Pit thread, we did have a more-or-less competent loan officer (although weirdly, he never did figure out how to spell my name correctly) and a stellar agent who (I’m guessing) bugged him a lot.

My coworker (unfortunately, after we’d already committed to WF) recommended, which gives amazing interest rates, and he said that his refinance was very straightforward and easy, and they answered any questions he had competently. However, although I trust my coworker, I can’t personally vouch for them, so take that second-hand-recommendation-from-anonymous-message-board for what it’s worth :slight_smile:

If I had to do it again, I’d probably go with my credit union (we didn’t because they are based out of town, and I was a bit concerned about that)… if you have a local credit union you’re happy with, I’d recommend that.

The only weirdness we ran into was that WF was uptight about everything. Our loan officer told us, for example, not to move money around, even between two different accounts that both had our names on them. I also posted in another thread that WF demanded to know who pulled our credit report… uh, yeah, that was WF itself, approving us for the mortgage. :rolleyes:

I recommend that you think of using your current financial institution. They will probably be the best source for a pre-qualifaction letter (telling agents and sellers that you have the wherewithal to buy a home). Also, many banks/cus/s&ls will give you some kind of credit (lower closing fees or interest rate) if you agree to make them your primary financial institution (have your paycheck direct deposited there, use their credit card and have your mortgage there was the package our lender asked for). Why not talk to them first? You already have a relationship.

My middle-large bank stated up front that they never sell their loans (I was suspicious because they wouldn’t remove their right to sell from the loan documents but they said that had to stay in as a standard term–they can’t value their loans the same way if they are non-transferable) and they were good to their word–they never sold it and serviced it themselves. They branded it a “no surprises” mortgage. Closing costs were shown in the mortgage term sheet I got up front.

I intended to stay with my bank if at all possible for simplicity’s sake, but I still got mortgage rate quotes from a couple of other lenders and I also compared the rates. My bank was mostly willing to match the offers from the other lenders. I probably didn’t have the rock-bottom rate, but I thought the relationship/single financial home was important. Never regretted it.

I already have a relationship with Chase (checking, savings, payroll deposit, credit card). However, I hate them (long and unrelated story, except for the part about how they jerked me around when I was paying off my credit card balance), and have only kept the relationship active because I don’t want to screw around with it right before I apply for a mortgage. I intend to ditch them as soon as we are done closing on our place.

My wife and I got our mortgage through the state of Vermont, via a local credit union (which we did not have to join). It was actually recommended to us through a national mortgage company.

There was no down payment, a super low interest rate, and the interest rate and monthly payment are guaranteed to never to change.

The deal was for first time home buyers who made less than a certain amount, something like $60,000 combined. Which was perfect for us being newly married, and the final monthly payment (including insurance and taxes) turned out to be lower than rent in town for a small apartment.

So check out situations like that, through the government. They aren’t in it to make a profit, unlike private mortgage companies. The private company that recommended the state program has since gone out of business, if that tells you anything.

If a condo or PUD is not VA or FHA approved, the VA/FHA will not finance it, period. Learned that by suprise. I’m buying my second house due to relocation, and am trying to get a VA mortgage, so we have to check which neighborhoods are VA approved.

VA loans do not require a down payment or PMI, so that can be a super plus for eligible veterans.