Mortgage Brokers: Pros and Cons

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Mortgage brokers can find you the loan of your dreams, but you have to weigh the potential drawbacks before you hire one…

Mortgage Brokers: Overview

Mortgage Brokers: Pros and Cons

When looking for a mortgage, many home buyers use a mortgage broker to find the best terms and rates. However, following the collapse of the real estate market in 2008, brokers’ business practices were examined and whether they were acting in the best interests of clients was raised.

Working with an expert and qualified mortgage broker can help you find the right mortgage. However, there are pros and cons to consider before committing.

Benefits

A broker can save you work

Mortgage brokers have regular contacts with a wide variety of lenders, some of which may not even be known. A broker can also take you away from certain lenders whose mortgage contracts contain onerous payment terms.

That said, it’s helpful to do your own research before you meet a broker. A simple way to quickly get an idea of the average rates available for the type of mortgage you are applying for is to do an online rate search and then use a mortgage calculator. Such tools will allow you to easily compare rates and provide you with additional knowledge to assess the credibility of a mortgage broker.

A broker can have better access

Some lenders work exclusively with mortgage brokers and rely on them to provide them with adequate customers. You may not be capable to call some lenders directly to arrange a retail mortgage. Brokers can also get special rates from lenders because of the volume of business generated, which may be lower than what you can get on your own.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • Working with a mortgage broker can save you time and avoid fees.
  • Some of the drawbacks to consider include the fact that the broker’s interests are not necessarily the same as yours, that you may not get the best offer, and that he does not guarantee the estimates.
  • Take the time to contact lenders directly to find out about the mortgages available to you.


A broker may be capable to manage your fees

Mortgage Brokers: Pros and Cons

Several different types of fees may be involved in taking out a new mortgage or working with a new lender, including settlement fees, application fees, and assessment fees. In some cases, mortgage brokers may get lenders to waive some or all of these fees, which can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

Below are the mortgage offers offered by our partners.

Disadvantages

A broker’s interest may not match yours

Your ultimate mortgage goal is to find a loan at an affordable interest rate and a reduced fee. You are committed to the long term. A mortgage broker, on the other hand, often receives a fee from the lender for the introduction of its business. These fees may be based on the amount of the mortgage and vary from lender to lender. The goal of a broker is therefore to get you a mortgage that maximizes his remuneration. The stock market crash of 2008 revealed that many brokers were getting their clients mortgages they could not afford in the long run.

A broker may not find the best deal for you

Many homebuyers simply assume that a broker can offer them a better deal than they could get on their own, but that’s not always the case. Some lenders may offer buyers the same terms and rates as they offer mortgage brokers (sometimes even better). There’s never any harm in going around the markets on your own to see if your broker is really offering you a good deal. As mentioned earlier, using a mortgage calculator is an easy way to check if your broker is offering you a good deal.

You can charge a brokerage fee

Mortgage brokers are paid either by the lender or by you. If the fees are covered by the lender, you should ask yourself if you are not at risk of being directed to a more expensive loan because the commission paid to the broker is more lucrative. If you pay the fee, include them in the cost of the loan before deciding on the quality of the deal you will get. And make sure you fix all the fee issues in advance before you sign anything or start working with a broker.

Take the time to contact lenders directly to find out what mortgages are available to you.

Brokers often do not guarantee estimates

When a mortgage broker first presents offers from lenders, he or she often uses the term “good faith estimate.” This means that the broker believes that the offer will achieve the final terms of the agreement, but this is not always the case. In some cases, the lender may change the terms based on your actual demand, and you may end up paying a higher rate or additional fees.

Some lenders do not work with mortgage brokers

This trend has been on the rise since 2008, as some lenders find that mortgages granted by brokers are more likely to default than those granted by direct loans. By working through a broker, you may not have access to these lenders, some of whom may offer you better loan terms than you can obtain through the broker.

What is a mortgage broker?

Mortgage Brokers: Pros and Cons

A mortgage broker is an intermediary between a financial institution that offers loans secured by real estate and people interested in buying real estate who need to borrow money in the form of a loan to do so. The mortgage broker works with both parties to have the loan approved by the person concerned. It also collects and verifies all necessary documents that the lender must obtain from the person in order to complete the purchase of the home. A mortgage broker usually works with many different lenders and can offer various loan options to the borrower he works with.

What does a mortgage broker do?

Mortgage Brokers: Pros and Cons


A mortgage broker aims to conduct real estate transactions as a third-party intermediary between a borrower and a lender. The broker collects information from the person and goes to several lenders in order to find the best potential loan for his client. Finally, the broker plays the role of loan agent; it collects the necessary information and works with both parties to secure the closing of the loan.

How much does a mortgage broker cost?

Mortgage Brokers: Pros and Cons

A mortgage broker can be paid by a combination of fees paid by borrowers and commissions paid by credit institutions that wish to lend. Costs vary widely, but a mortgage broker typically earns between 1% and 3% of the total loan amount. The total amount paid by the borrower varies depending on the type of loan, the broker used, and the number of commissions the broker collects from the credit institution.

A mortgage broker’s compensation can appear on your closing expense sheet in a number of ways. They may charge you a file-setting fee, upfront fees, loan administration fees, a performance spread premium or simply a broker’s commission. When working with a mortgage broker, you need to specify the fee structure at the beginning of the process so that there are no surprises on closing day.

When is a mortgage broker paid?

A mortgage broker is usually paid only when a loan is closed and funds are released. Some lenders pay mortgage brokers based on their own accounting schedule, which can be up to 30 days after the loan closes. The majority of brokers cost borrowers nothing in the first place and they are generally risk-free. However, they will check your credit to see what type of loan they can grant on your behalf.

When should you consult a mortgage broker?

You need a mortgage broker if you want to have access to home loans that are not easily accessible to you. If you don’t have exceptional credit, if you have a single borrowing situation like owning your own business, or if you simply don’t see mortgages that would suit you, then a broker could give you access to loans that will benefit you. Many people prefer to work with a broker, regardless of their situation, because it allows them to access lenders they would not think to look for. Mortgage brokers can also help them get a lower interest rate than most commercial loans available.