Wednesday, July 29, 2009

How to select your Sacramento Lender...

Most of my buyer clients ask me for a referral to a loan officer as they start their loan pre-approval process. Before I divulge who I recommend, I would like to describe what buyers should look for in their ideal lender. Over the last 90 or so days, there have been several new laws and regulations that affect how the lending process functions. There are several critical pieces that buyers should look for in a lender that will make things run more smoothly in your purchase transaction. Ideally you will choose a direct lender (not a broker). One that lends its own money. One that does underwriting internally and locally. One that funds loans locally. One that works with local appraisers. One that provides you proper and accurate truth-in-lending disclosures up front.

Some important questions to ask of your loan officer as you move forward:
-Is your company a direct lender, or a mortgage broker?
-At what location does your loan processing and underwriting take place?
-Does the Appraisal Management Company (AMC) your company uses engage the services of ONLY local appraisers who are familiar with the local market?
-What is the average turn-around time from the date you order to the date you receive an appraisal report?
-What is the anticipated number of business days I can anticipate for underwriting? For loan document drawing? For final review and funding?
-Does your company fund its own loans?
-What company services loans originated by your company?

Ultimately, it does not matter to your agent what company or loan officer you decide to go with, as long as your loan does not get messed up or take too long to go through the process. Your loan officer and your agent will work very closely together throughout your entire purchase process.

What I can tell you about Vitek Mortgage Group in Sacramento, for example, is that they are a direct lender (a mortgage bank / not a broker) and lend their own money. They also are a "direct endorsement" lender for the programs of other banks. This is very important in today's market, especially if you seek to purchase a bank-owned home (many banks require that you get a loan pre-approval through them, even though you will not be required to use that bank...a direct endorsement lender can provide you a Bank of Americal pre-approval without you actually having to go to BofA and fill out another loan application). Vitek lends its own money, and has a staff of underwriters locally that review your file, and its staff that funds loans is also local. They work with local appraisers that are familiar with our Sacramento marketplace. They are very dilligent in providing borrowers/buyers with proper, accurate disclosures that show you your downpayment, closing costs, and monthly payment (monthly payment includes loan principle, interest, insurance, and property tax).

If you decide to speak with someone at Vitek, I recommend Marlena Olson at 916-486-6931 or

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