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Not All Lenders Charge the Same

Ready to buy a home? As you shop for a home you are determining whether or not a property will meet your needs and making sure that you’re not paying too much for it. You should shop for a lender in the same way. Consumers want a good price AND good customer service. Regarding the price, that is easier to evaluate. Each lender will be able to give you an estimate of their costs for the loan. The customer service aspect might be more difficult to assess so ask your local real estate agent for referrals.  I don’t/can’t take kickbacks from lenders so if I refer you to one it’s because I know they’ll get the job done in your best interest.

Let’s look at how to evaluate the cost of the loan. First, it is recommended that you get the opinion of three lenders to see how they stack up. With each prospective lender, get an itemized summary of their charges. Lenders will need some basic information such as your credit score income statements and any debt you may have incurred.   By law, within 3 days they will give you basic information on the cost of the loan such as lender’s fees and an estimation of your monthly payments, also known as a Loan Disclosure (formerly HUD-1).

Once you get a summary of the lender’s costs for the loan you wish to apply for, compare them side-by-side. Here’s what to look for:

  1. Interest Rate – There are various factors that impact your rate (i.e. your credit score, type of loan, loan discount points, etc.) but some lenders have a higher interest rate than others for the same loan product.
  2. Loan Origination Fees – some lenders will charge a flat fee or none at all. Some will charge a percentage of the loan amount, typically one percent (this is where your loan gets expensive).

Example: On a recent transaction, one lender charged 1% for loan origination on the same loan while another charged a flat fee of $1200. For a $400,000 loan you will be paying $4000 vs. $1200 for the same product.

  1. Underwriting Fees – This is the cost for the underwriter services for your loan.       Compare to see which one is higher.
  2. Additional Fees – Some fees you’ll see have miniscule differences but when added up, can make one lender look more attractive than another (i.e. Tax Service, Credit Report, Appraisal Fee, Flood Certification).

In addition to cost, the level of service provided by a lender is very important. This can make or break a transaction. Some questions to ask:

  1. What is the lender’s availability? Do they return calls/emails to you and your real estate agent in a timely fashion? Do they work weekends and nights if need be? This is crucial if you have important questions, especially those of a time-sensitive nature.
  2. Will you be working with an individual throughout the transaction or a team? Sometimes a personal touch can make all the difference. In any case, you’ll want someone that knows you, what your needs are and where you are at in the transaction. This is especially important with regard to getting the appraisal done on time.
  3. What kind of loans do they provide? Some lenders tend to provide a limited number of loans as they provide service in multiple states. Local lenders will provide basic loans (Conventional, FHA, VA) but also state specific products that will benefit you (i.e. down payment grant assistance programs).
  4. What happens if the lender makes a mistake? Will they correct the issue and compensate you?   It happens, we all make mistakes. A good customer service provider will fix it with the least amount of burden to you.

Once you’ve narrowed your prospects down to one lender, it’s wise to shop their offer around to the other lenders. They can evaluate whether or not they can meet or beat the other lender(s). Once you’re satisfied you have chosen the right lender, have them pre-approve you for a loan and then you are ready to go shopping for a home and start making offers!


About the author: Sean Gilliam is a Realtor® with RE/MAX Alliance in Northern Colorado and is a Certified New Home Specialist™.  Sean can be reached at seangilliam@remax.net or by phone at 970-313-6706.  For additional articles see Sean’s blog or to search for properties see his web page.

Interested in buying a home or selling your current home?  I am committed to your success.  Give me a call at 970-313-6706 to get started.

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Things to do in Longmont this October

Looking for fun and interesting things to do in Longmont this October?  Below is the short list.  If you’re looking for more information on Longmont and all there is to do, check out visitlongmont.org.

Click on the link below for a larger image.


About the author: Sean Gilliam is a Realtor® with RE/MAX Alliance in Northern Colorado and is a Certified New Home Specialist™.  Sean can be reached at seangilliam@remax.net or by phone at 970-313-6706.  For additional articles see Sean’s blog or to search for properties see his web page.

Interested in buying a home or selling your current home?  I am committed to your success.  Give me a call at 970-313-6706 to get started.

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Things to do in Longmont this August!

Looking for fun and interesting things to do in Longmont this summer?  Check out this list for the month of July.  For more events, check out visitlongmont.org.

 


About the author: Sean Gilliam is a Realtor® with RE/MAX Alliance in Northern Colorado and is a Certified New Home Specialist™.  Sean can be reached at seangilliam@remax.net or by phone at 970-313-6706.  For additional articles see Sean’s blog or to search for properties see his web page.

Interested in buying a home or selling your current home?  I am committed to your success.  Give me a call at 970-313-6706 to get started.

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Longmont Events in July!

Looking for fun and interesting things to do in Longmont this summer?  Check out this list for the month of July.  For more events, check out visitlongmont.org.

 


About the author: Sean Gilliam is a Realtor® with RE/MAX Alliance in Northern Colorado and is a Certified New Home Specialist™.  Sean can be reached at seangilliam@remax.net or by phone at 970-313-6706.  For additional articles see Sean’s blog or to search for properties see his web page.

Interested in buying a home or selling your current home?  I am committed to your success.  Give me a call at 970-313-6706 to get started.

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Scrumptious – Longmont Restaurant Review

Scrumptious…it’s all good!

Looking for great homemade ice-cream or hard to find candy?  Come to Scrumptious in downtown Longmont at 508 Main Street.  All of their ice cream is made in the store with natural ingredients.  They even take requests for specific flavors of ice cream you may fancy.  If they can make it, they may have it for you the next time you come in.

They also carry all sorts of candy from old-world, vintage styled candy to all the new candies on the market.  If you’re looking for bottles of soda from yesteryear, they have plenty of those too.  They even have a food truck that will deliver ice cream to your special events!

The shop has a warm, retro feel to it.  There is seating inside and on the sidewalk out front.  Like any good ice cream shop, you can sample their ice cream flavors for free.  Their servings are very generous.  The kids size was quite enough for me while my wife and daughter split one together.

It’s located in the heart of Main Street Longmont and is a great stop for those hot summer days or for that necessary craving for something sweet.  Check out their shop in Olde Town Arvada at 7523 Grandview Avenue.

 

Here’s a link to their website for more information: Scrumptious

 


About the author: Sean Gilliam is a Realtor® with RE/MAX Alliance in Northern Colorado and is a Certified New Home Specialist™.  Sean can be reached at seangilliam@remax.net or by phone at 970-313-6706.  For additional articles see Sean’s blog or to search for properties see his web page.

Interested in buying a home or selling your current home?  I am committed to your success.  Give me a call at 970-313-6706 to get started.

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Just sold this beautiful home in SW Longmont!

Just sold this beautiful home in SW Longmont.  Seller put a lot of work into getting this home ready and it paid off.  They sold it at $7000 over list price!  Need help selling your home?  I’d be glad to meet with you and show you what you can do to get the best price.  Sean Gilliam, 970-313-6706.

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Just Sold!

Just sold this beautiful mountain property!  I represented the seller on this one.  It received a lot of attention from buyers, had multiple offers and ultimately sold for $30,000 over the list price!  The mountain market is really waking up this Spring.  Let me know if you need assistance buying or selling a home, I’d be glad to help.  Sean Gilliam 970-313-6706

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Longmont Events for May 2018

Looking for things to do in Longmont for the month of May?  As the weather is getting warmer, it’s a great time to get out with friends and family!  For additional events and activities, check out visitlongmont.org.

 


About the author: Sean Gilliam is a Realtor® with RE/MAX Alliance in Northern Colorado and is a Certified New Home Specialist™.  Sean can be reached at seangilliam@remax.net or by phone at 970-313-6706.  For additional articles see Sean’s blog or to search for properties see his web page.

Interested in buying a home or selling your current home?  I am committed to your success.  Give me a call at 970-313-6706 to get started.

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