Steps For Finding the Right Mortgage Lender


Are you planning on moving to Arlington? Arlington, Virginia, is a popular area for D.C. commuters and has some outstanding unique benefits that make it a great place to live. Much like a large city, you don’t need to drive everywhere. Many residents live only a few blocks from the metro, and there are dozens of bike rental stations as well. In fact, Arlington has some of the best walking and biking trails in the state. Arlington real estate is selling quickly – single-family homes and townhomes have higher price tags while the condo market has cooled off a bit.

Before buying a home, shop around for the best mortgage lenders. Below are a few steps for finding the right mortgage lender.

Fix credit score

Addressing your credit score can seem intimidating, but there are ways to fix it. You can bring up a low credit score to an average or above-average rating with some time and patience. If you have a lot of debt, paying it off or at least focusing on bringing it down can help improve your credit score. While you’re paying off your debts, avoid purchases using credit cards or other credit lines. Avoid opening or closing any lines of credit while you work on getting your credit score into a good enough place for house hunting.

Research lenders

Understanding the major lenders will help you find your match. Credit unions are member-owned financial institutions that often offer favorable interest rates to shareholders. Mortgage bankers work for a specific financial institution and package loans for consideration by the bank’s underwriters. Correspondent lenders are often local mortgage loan companies that have the resources to make your loan. Savings and loans are now a bit harder to find, but these smaller financial institutions are often community-oriented and worth looking into. Mutual savings banks are locally focused and often competitive.

Get pre-approved

Pre-approval shows how much a lender is willing to give. If you’re in a competitive housing market, you should do all you can to stand out in a sea of borrowers. Getting pre-approved is one way to do this. It shows you are serious about buying. It shows the seller a bank has already verified your information and you’ve already started the mortgage process.

Compare rates

There’s no standard format for how lenders will display rates, but most tend to feature the same type of information—even if it isn’t laid out differently. When you look at a rate table, consider rate type, interest rate, APR, and points and credit.

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