Home » Brian Carvalho
Senior Loan Officer
NMLS ID # 896755
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Loan Officer Interview Q&A's
I have spent over 15 years in the financial services sector with numerous positions within sales, operations, and management. This has provided me exposure to working with a variety of clients in meeting their overall lending needs. I have focused my last two years solely in the mortgage lending business. What I found to be true is that a mortgage loan is the single most impactful transaction any consumer may face. Whether it is a first time purchase or their tenth, the process is very personal and life changing, thus becomes as much an emotional transaction as a financial one. With so much complexity and constantly changing regulations it is hard for a consumer to become educated about the process and keep up with the changes. Real Estate and home ownership have intrigued me since I was little, and it is the lifeblood of the economy. I have seen how it has evolved a block, a town, a state, and beyond. However, what has been called the “American Dream” has become a nightmare for some and for others just a dream. No one person can individually fix every problem, end every nightmare, or make all dreams a reality, but I do believe that I personally can make a difference. My inspiration comes from helping each person individually change their dream into a reality. I view myself as a partner with them, which means I must always listen first to their needs, goals and desires and then I can react best and with a focus on them accordingly.
Who is your typical customer and what questions do they typically have?
My typical clients range in type and need from first time home buyers that may be unfamiliar with the process or may require some guidance. They may wonder: What type of loan should I get, what is the difference between FHA and conventional? How important is my credit score to the process? What are points, closing costs, PMI? Other clients may be more familiar or savvy with the process and may ask: How can I leverage my existing home for equity? What are the best options for investment purchases? What purchase strategies would you recommend for jumbo loans with little cash down? I love the variety as it allows me to hone in on a number of specialized areas, this keeps me well informed about the different changes in the market and allows me to benefit not just the current customer but leverage the knowledge going forward.
What specific steps do you use to help your customers find the best home loan for them?
Regardless of the customer, I always try to capture the following: 1)General- a. What is your price range? b. What type of property? (House/condo/etc.) c. What is your timeframe? (30 days, 3 months, etc.) d. How long do you expect to live there? (3 years, 10 years, etc.) e. What type of loan (fixed, ARM) and what length term? 2)Examine Credit of borrowers- a. Determine scores b. Total debt c. areas of concern/areas to repair 3)Financial Standing- a. Assets b. Other financial obligations c. Income Sources d. Desired Down payment
What are the pros and cons of a fixed rate mortgage versus an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)?
This has been a debated topic for years and years. Simply put, it depends on the client and their needs, coupled with their risk tolerance. The last few years of low rates aside, for those that know upfront that they intend to occupy the home for many years and want the comfort of knowing they are “locked in” then a fixed rate is probably the best option as it will protect them from any rise in the rates later. However, considering the average home owner refinances every 3 years, one may consider an ARM option as it allows them to have a lower payment for a fixed period that they can either utilize the monies for other needs or pay down more of the principal faster. While those who have utilized the ARM products have generally beat the market year over year, this can be risky if there is not a sufficient amount of equity in the home when the loan is refinanced.
What advice would you give new or first time home buyers?
The best advice I could give to new or first time home buyers is to find a trusted partner (like myself ?) that will help educate you on the process. The mortgage lending market is complex and home ownership can be very rewarding, but you need to make sure that you are an educated consumer. There are many laws that have been implemented to protect the consumer which is good, but working with a reputable loan officer is the best bet. Also, despite what you may feel or have been told, going directly to your bank or any bank is not usually the best option for your lending needs and will almost never provide the best deal. Take that from someone that worked in one of the (Big Banks) for several years, the rates we offered were not as competitive then and now many have moved out of this space or have lost considerable market share. If you’re purchasing a home, you should go straight to the lender that is the market leader and that is Guaranteed Rate. Lastly, if you are pre-approved already at a bank or another lender, do not feel you are locked in with them only. Like a doctor, it is sometimes very valuable to get a “second opinion”
What part of the home loan process do customers find most difficult and how do you help them through it?
For many this process is either new or unfamiliar to them. I am not sure if there is a single specific area, but some that I try to ensure is addressed is the team involved. I always try to make sure they are working with a reputable agent and one that specializes in their needs and has a strong knowledge of the market they are looking in. They also need to locate an inspector that they trust and not just one that was referred, but one that has their best interest in mind. They need to secure an attorney that is versed in real estate law, not just any attorney. This is especially important in dealing with investment or multi-unit occupancy purchases.
What 2 or 3 mobile apps would you recommend for home buyers or house hunters, and why? What Smart Apps do you recommend your customers use for the house hunting process?
In this market real estate moves fast, it is simply not possible to expect that we can wait until Saturday and Sunday to spend the day driving around to look at open houses. Not only do consumers lack the time, but this is not productive as much of the properties may be sold or under agreement already. Utilizing mobile apps like Zillow, Redfin, and Realtor.com are very good to start with or in conjunction with working with a reputable realtor. This will allow you to search in specific areas, understand the price ranges in the area, similar sold, and how long the property has been on the market, property taxes, and may even provide pictures and video of the listed property.
What resources could you recommend that borrowers use to learn more about the mortgage process and how to ensure a successful home closing?
While there is so much information out there, and much is constantly changing, I would recommend any borrower to utilize the Fannie Mae website as it has a wealth of information and everything they may want to know about the process, right down to the details of underwriting guidelines that most lenders utilize in determining whether a loan is approve/eligible. The best resource is to speak to a qualified licensed loan officer that has a decent grasp on the regulations and can help you navigate through the ones that specifically impact your needs.
What can borrowers do to insure a smooth mortgage underwriting process?
We all have experienced the dreaded lines at the bank or the registry, but what often causes the lines (besides low staff personnel) is the unprepared customer. The one that waited until they got to the window to fill out the slip. While we cannot compare the complexity of the mortgage process to anything else, there is one thing that each borrower can do to positively impact the experience and that is by being responsive to requests. This process is likened to an orchestra with many different skilled musicians, it takes the effort and skill of all members to create a great performance. For us, this is our business and we are structured in such a way that we each contribute to the lifecycle of the loan process. In order to stay on track for a timely transaction and ensure the loan moves smoothly through the process it is critical that you respond as quickly as possible to any inquiries or requests for documentation/clarification that you receive in regards to your file. “HELP US HELP YOU”.
What do you enjoy doing most in your spare time when you are not helping people with their home loans?
When I am not working, I enjoy being outside. Since my favorite time of year is summer, I enjoy all the fun and hot weather that comes with it. I enjoy running, going to the beach, and love to grill. Because the summers are so short around here, I escape often to Florida or some Caribbean destination to thaw out and clear my head
Tell us something that makes you unique or something wacky, yet interesting about you?
So many stories and so little time…. Here’s a laundry list of unique and wacky. I am a twin which was not evident until we were born as we had a simultaneous heartbeat and the equipment was not as state of the art as today. My mother delivered me, my father left the room(probably a weak stomach) and as he walked down the hallway, the nurse yelled “Wait Mr. Carvalho, you need to come back there is another one!” From that day on I wrestled with sharing the spotlight. After that….. I have worked in so many jobs from landscaping, electrical, telecommunications, banking, business coaching, personal training, modeling, cook, and business development. I have successfully started 3 different businesses in very different industries. I have season tickets to the Boston Red Sox that have remained in my family for over 40 years. For wacky, I have been mugged twice and held up at robbery…I lived through both with only hurt feelings. One of my favorite moments ever was flying with Robert and Myra Kraft(owner of the New England Patriots) on his private jet. Besides their great personalities, I will never forget the flight that has forever made first class feel like coach for me…
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