If you're looking to take advantage of historically low interest rates, then 2021 may be your last chance before things start to heat up even more. Unfortunately, it looks like while mortgage rates are going to stay low, your chances of getting a sub-3% home loan are getting a bit slimmer with each passing month. As such, it's crucial to get pre-approved for a home loan as soon as possible if you're looking to make a purchase in 2021. That being said, there are a lot of different factors to keep in mind as you compare home loans, so it's best to know what you're looking for before you head into the process. Whether you're looking to stay in a premier RV park, mobile home park, or own a condo or single-family home, here are four tips for finding a solid home loan.
Ask friends or family members for referrals.
The first place to start when you're thinking about purchasing a home is by talking to friends and family members about any positive or negative experiences they've had with local lenders and about the mortgage rates they've secured. You may also want to talk to coworkers to see if they have a network of lenders that they've worked with before and would trust to get the job done well. It's always a good idea to start with your immediate network when you're looking to build a list of possible lenders, since that's going to narrow your search down a lot more than just heading to Google.
Talk to your agent.
Once you've come up with a list of lenders you've heard good things about, it's a good idea to speak with your agent about whether or not they have a preferred lender they like to work with. Remember that a mortgage lender isn't just going to give you a mortgage rate and an amount they're willing to loan you; they're also responsible for ensuring that everything related to financial paperwork clears in time for you to close at the time you want. As such, when you work with someone your real estate agent has experience with, you don't run the risk of adding too many unknown variables to your closing process. Of course, it will help if you have a great credit score and can put down a nice down payment. Your credit score is one of the first things any lender will look at when considering offering a mortgage loan to a homebuyer.
Get quotes from multiple loan companies.
Once you've narrowed your search down even more, it's time to actually compare home loans from different lenders. Different lenders may have different interest rates that they're able to offer you, as well as different loan amounts that they're comfortable offering, too. While it may be tempting to immediately go with the lender who can offer you the highest loan amount or the most competitive interest rate, it's crucial to weigh all of the factors regarding loan amount, closing timeline, interest rate, and other potential origination fees before you come to a final decision. You may even be able to play different pre-approval letters or interest rates against one another in order to get a better deal from the mortgage lender you like the most.
Read online reviews.
Before you pull the trigger, it's not a bad idea to read up on some online reviews of the lender you're considering. Reading a few months or years of online reviews is the best way to learn more about the pros and cons of your lender from real homebuyers just like you. Buying a home is a stressful process, so knowing the good, bad, and ugly about your lending officer and loan originator can help you be in a great place and better prepare for any bumps you may experience in your homebuying journey. Remember that you're evaluating the financial institution as a lender much as they're evaluating you as a borrower, so it's important to source as much information about the company as possible before selecting a mortgage lender