4 Signs You've Got The Right Mortgage Broker
Finding a mortgage broker can be a little daunting - they may have the right qualifications, great reviews, but can you really trust they'll do a great job for you? And exactly what does an ideal broker look like anyway?
For some, engaging a mortgage broker is the 1st step onto the property ladder. For others, it's about having an expert to do the leg work for you, saving you time & energy while you look to refinance or expand your existing portfolio.
Like any service, the quality & experience of a mortgage broker can vary considerably, making it even more important you find one that's the right fit for you & your financial goals.
Here's 4 things that will help you know when you've found a quality mortgage broker.
They Want to get to know you
For a mortgage broker to provide the best possible solutions for you, they need to know about you. And that means questions - not just about your income, occupation, expense & assets. A good broker will also be interested in the bigger picture - understanding your longer term plans, family, career, lifestyle. This is important so they can formulate advice & recommendations that will benefit you well beyond the next 1-5 years.
If they're not taking the time to get to know you this can be an early warning sign that perhaps they have a 'one size fits all' approach to lending. And while it may get your loan approved, it may not be in your best interest in the long run.
They're open & transparent about how they get paid
Luckily in NZ you don't generally have to pay for the services of a mortgage broker. This is because we receive remuneration from the lender once a loan is drawn down as either a upfront payment or an ongoing trailer.
When mortgage brokers first entered the NZ market there was often concern that they'd just place the loan with whoever would pay the most. Rest assured a genuine mortgage broker will see the value in making sure you get the best possible fit for your situation. As a happy customer will lead to repeat business, and recommendations, which is what keeps a mortgage broker in business & ultimately is a win for both the client and the broker.
They Have a diverse panel of lenders
A lending panel is the list of banks and institutions that the broker has been approved to work with.
It's a great sign if a broker has a large panel of lenders.
Firstly, there will be more options available to you when it comes to getting your loan approved. It means they have access to different types of lenders beyond just the top four banks. It also means they have access to lenders open to less 'traditional' deals, with often broader lending criteria, which is always beneficial if your requirements don't quite fit the box.
Secondly, it shows that a variety of institutions are happy to work with your broker and that is always a sign of a quality broker.
It is very important that a broker has a strong relationship with each lending institution. The way the applications are submitted for approval and a strong relationship ensure good quality and faster approvals.
They will advise you to borrow less
Yes you read that right! This is a sure sign a broker has your best interest at heart & it's definitely not all about the money for them.
Often when we look to buy a home we want to borrow the maximum amount we can, to get the best place possible. However, this isn't always the best option, particularly if you considering expanding your family in the near future, or are wanting to start your own business, or have a wedding in the pipeline.
A good mortgage broker will remind you of your longer term plans, & advise you on any potential undue financial pressure or risk & how to avoid it.
Of course the final decision will always be up to you.
So simply put if you've found yourself a mortgage broker that
- takes the time to get to know you
- is comfortable asking & being asked the tough questions
- has a good selection of lenders willing to work with them (along with having the relevant experience, qualifications & reviews of course)
- will encourage you in a certain direction because it's in your best interest (even if it means less/ no income for them)
Then you know you've got yourself the right mortgage broker.