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Mary Kay Laurent

Vice President of Mortgage Lending
3940 North Ravenswood, Chicago, IL 60613
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NMLS: 870598
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Recommended you to someone yesterday. Mary Kay Laurent was the best. She led me through confidently and assuredly, after my terrible experience with a big bank, that all would proceed with the utmost professionalism. Her insights and knowledge paved the way with excellent results. Thank you.

Thaao P. | October 2016

Mary Kay Laurent was the most professional loan officer I've worked with. And I'm in housing / real estate. The Guaranteed Rate online services are OUTSTANDING. It was professional, expedient and almost painless. THANK YOU

Cary S. | 10/6/16

Thank you for all your hard work. You really pulled me through the eye of the needle. I love my house. Thanks for making everything smooth and easy. If only kids were like mortgages!

Michael D. 10/3/16

Mary Kay is 100% responsible and great at follow-through. She kept me well aware of the steps, checked in every time there was a process underway to make sure I understood what was required. She even came to the closing. Guaranteed Rate was also amazing -- the ability to do everything on-line was the most professional thing I've ever worked on. I've completed a couple of purchase loans and a couple of re-fi loans over the years -- this was the best experience. Even the closing fees were...


We almost lost our new home by not getting an updated pre-approval letter from the Bank in a timely manner for our offer. My parents emailed Mary Kay Laurent whom they had worked with in the past and she contacted me immediately (on a weekend too!). Mary Kay gave me instructions to go to her site and fill out some information which gave me a new pre-approval letter in under 10 minutes. We said goodbye to our bank and hello to Guaranteed Rate and we couldn't be happier. We got the house of our...

Robert W. - 6/30/2016

The Guaranteed Rate team consisting of Mary Kay Laurent, Ned Babb, Joseph Shiffer, Joseph Wilson, Venus Campanelli, and any others I have omitted were outstanding in their quickness of response, optimism, and especially their perseverance in closing my refinance loan. I can be a tough person to work with when things seem to get more difficult. Due to the type of property (investment) I own and the critical factor that the property was transferred into an "inter vivos" (i.e., "among the living")...

Anthony C. 06/07/2016

Mary Kay Laurent and her team were there for me every step of the re-financing process, making sure my questions were answered promptly and satisfactorily. I felt confident and very well cared for as a client!

Rosa Melendez

You and the Guaranteed Rate team have made the home buying and refinancing process a breeze. The new online system allows the homebuyer to apply and upload at their convenience. You and your team did an outstanding job of keeping me informed throughout the process. Thank you so much for all of your help and encouragement on this journey. I am thoroughly enjoying being a homeowner.

Ann 02/09/2016

Mary Kay was amazing. This is my second time working with her and the team at Guaranteed Rate. They make the lending process a breeze. They are through and responsive. As a first time home buyer I had a great deal of anxiety about the process, but every time I called with a question she got right back to me with an answer and assured me that everything was progressing and on target. The refinancing process was even easier. It was a quick and painless online process.

Ann R 2/11/2016

Mary Kay Laurent was extremely helpful in guiding us through the process and working out any issues that came up along the way. Even at closing, when a paperwork issue came up, she was able to immediately remedy the problem. Best of all, she felt more like a trusted friend during our refinance than a random agent or manager. Thanks again!

Robert M. 1/5/2016

Mary Kay Laurent was extremely helpful in guiding us through the process and working out any issues that came up along the way. Even at closing, when a paperwork issue came up, she was able to immediately remedy the problem. Best of all, she felt more like a trusted friend during our refinance than a random agent or manager. Thanks again!

Robert M. 1/5/2016

Mary Kay Laurent was wonderful. From day 1, she made the loan process straight forward and easy. Communication was key and she went above and beyond my expectations. She was clear with what was needed and very up front which made the loan process less daunting. From a consumer perspective, I felt she went out of her way to make this process streamlined and easy. I greatly appreciate her and her team's efforts.

Jerome J. 1/1/2016

My loan officer, Mary Kay Laurent, was SUPER helpful through the whole process . . . reassuring when I imagined the worst, and realistic when I wanted magic. She was practical, thorough, smart and kind all the way. Can't speak too highly of her. I had only one month from the date of application to the projected closing date. Mary Kay said she could get the loan approved in 30 days, and she made it happen.

Mary B. 11/05/2015

Dear folks at Guaranteed Rate, Mary K Laurent is a wonderful associate with your company we give her 10 stars. She was a wonderful woman, extremely helpful and we would recommend her to all our friends who need a mortgage.

Susan D. 10/29/2015

Dear folks at Guaranteed Rate, Mary K Laurent is a wonderful associate with your company we give her 10 stars. She was a wonderful woman, extremely helpful and we would recommend her to all our friends who need a mortgage.

Susan D. 10/29/2015

Mary Kay Laurent is a true professional. Always in contact with us, answered questions when she was on vacation, and secured a loan at a rate lower then expected. Without a doubt, the best group of professionals I have ever worked with. We got our loan BELOW the going rate and finished up in 2 weeks!

Robert K. 09/01/2015

Mary Kay went out of her way to get me the best deal she could. She was always available to answer questions and made the whole process so smooth.

Jessica T.– Chicago, IL | July 2015

Mary Kay and her team were the best!

Patricia A.– Chicago, IL | June 2015

Mary Kay is the absolute best at what she does. I help people find lenders who have circumstances making it difficult to get a mortgage, and Mary Kay is able to get loans approved no one else can! I even used her to buy my new home a few months back, and my experience with her was amazing. Thanks again Mark Kay!!!

Randall Y. 02/06/2015

The home is beautiful and I couldn't have done it without you. Thanks for all you guidance and hard work! My kids are thrilled! Let's do it again sometime.

Mike D. 12/22/2014

Mary Kay and the team at Guaranteed Rate are amazing. Being a first time home buyer, I had tons of questions and concerns. Mary Kay and her team took the time to explain each step in the process and kept me informed throughout the whole journey. Mary Kay’s personal interest in my home ownership goals made Guaranteed Rate the easy choice when it was time to choose my lender. Mary Kay is a delight to work with!

Ann R.

We are very happy that we got our mortgage loan and documentation done with Guaranteed Rate for our dream home. Our lending officer Mary Kay Laurent was always available to answer our questions, perform necessary number crunching and handle discussions with our title company. We feel (and know!) that we got the best service during our home buying process. Thanks Mary Kay and the team. We look forward to working with you in future!

Megha T.

"Mary Kay Laurent and her team made the loan application process virtually painless… Warm and personal customer service; Guaranteed Rate made the process of buying my first home easy to understand. From the beginning I received valuable information regarding what to expect and what I could do to help things along. I always felt well informed! Keep up the excellent attention to client's needs!"

Rosa M. -- Chicago, IL. -- 11/2013

Thanks so much for making the process of buying my new home so smooth…your expertise, attention to detail, and care was truly remarkable. Thanks from the heart!

Luisiana M. - November, 2013

When I sought out Mary Kay about home refinance, I was in high distress. I’d been led along for months, first by one “Major Bank” and then another. I finally turned to Mary Kay. From this moment, the fog began to lift. All was explained, soothing help was provided to fill out documents; and all those almost-there tasks, somehow finished themselves. All was accomplished either by Mary Kay herself or a brilliantly efficient office team in the background. Then, in just over five weeks, an email...

June, 2013

Mary Kay was a genuine pleasure. She was so helpful, kind, informed and organized. She made the process work! We would recommend her anytime to everyone!

Mary Lu and Ken R. - June, 2013

Hey check out the great review from Omar about Mary Kay! “We had a great experience with Mary Kay Laurent. Good rate for good price and speedy. Thank you Mary Kay!!”

Omar A. -- Chicago, IL -- 03/2013

Working with Mary Kay on my mortgage refinance was an absolute dream. Not only was she able to save me money on my monthly payment, but she helped turn it around in the shortest time possible! Everything went so smoothly. From beginning to end Mary Kay was there to answer all of my questions and help guide me through what turned out to be a seamless process. I would highly recommend her to anyone looking to get a new mortgage or refinance their old one. She is professional, efficient,...

Jessica T., Feb 4, 2013

Mary Kay worked with me to refinance my mortgage and came up with great solutions when issues with my appraisal came up. She is professional, attentive and always gets back to me quickly. Mary Kay is terrific to work with and I would recommend her.

Sheila L. - Chicago, IL 1/2013

Mary Kay is simply amazing. I can rely on her to explain to clients what the best options are, and what they need to provide her in order for them to be pre-approved. She is my mortgage expert and guru. If there is an issue, Mary Kay will advise the client on what they need to do to get the problem corrected and if the problem can't be resolved quickly Mary Kay is willing to work with the client even if it takes time. Everyone goal is to get the client that dream home. For me Mary Kay...

Manuel B., Broker - Chicago, IL

About Mary

I love helping people realize their dream of owning their own home. I have always found fulfillment in helping people, becoming a Mortgage lender is one of life's biggest privileges. Every mortgage is different, I enjoy helping my clients in their path of home ownership, whether first time, upgrading into a larger home or second home, investment properties to build wealth, or leveraging their equity to supplement their golden years!

I received my BBA from the University of Cincinnati and was the first women president of a Alpha Kappa Psi Business Fraternity and learned early on that leadership is about building a great team and enabling them to succeed! A skill I use every day as a Mortgage Lender.

I live in Evanston IL with my Husband Jim and my Daughter Nina and am a host Mom to 2 Chinese high school students. I am an active member of the Chicago NAPW Chapter and The Women's Club of Evanston where I co-chair a soup kitchen program on Saturdays. In my free time I try and manage my garden and read a book for my book club, and attend Sts. Peter and Paul Greek Orthodox Church - yes, I am a Greek girl and love to cook Greek and Dance!!

Mary interview Q&A

How long have you been in the mortgage business and what inspired you to get into it?
I have been a mortgage lender going on 5 years - I find mortgage lending to be a great privilege to be part of my client's most profound event and largest purchase.
Who is your typical customer and what questions do they typically have?
I work with a range of clients from first time home buyers, to seasoned investors, clients looking to upgrade to a larger home, to retiree's looking to downsize and leverage their equity. The typical questions have to do with the process and costs, which I am always upfront with.
What specific steps do you use to help your customers find the best home loan for them?
The first step is to help my clients understand what they can afford and the pros and cons of different first time home buyer programs and down payment assistance programs.
What are the pros and cons of a fixed rate mortgage versus an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)?
If you are planning on staying in your home longer than 5 years, a fixed rate mortgage will allow you to build the equity in your home better than an ARM. The ARM is better if you are planning on selling in a few years and know that the property values will increase.
Tell us about a specific challenging borrowing situation and how you got the mortgage closed and funded.
I was working with a young couple purchasing their first home in a large condo complex with the state's down payment assistance program and the investor for that program had declined the condo project. By creating a win win for both the buyer and seller's realtor, along with the buyer and the property management company - together, we were able to get the information needed from the construction company that was handling a renovation project as a result of a lawsuit against the builder. The investor told me after they approved the project that 4 other lenders had tried to get this condo approval for this down payment assistance program and they all failed, because they never got the correct information that they were looking for. By creating a collaborative environment, I find I can handle situations that other lenders walk away from.
What advice would you give new or first time home buyers?
Once you purchase your first home, you pay yourself every month by building equity in your home whether or not your home appreciates - why build your landlord's wealth by paying rent every month! Once you live in your home your equity grows over the years, you can leverage that to purchase your next home or use the equity to handle life's challenges. Give me time in the beginning of buying a home, to discuss the process, programs available and help you understand what is expected in every step, so we can make your first time home buying a smooth and happy experience.
Tell us about a mortgage product that consumers may not be aware of?
There are home buying programs for first time home buyers, that will help with downpayment and closing costs, and lower your MI (mortgage insurance) if you put less than 20% downpayment. These are fabulous programs to get started in owning your first home.
How has the mortgage industry changed since you started, and what would you expect in the future?
Although there is more government regulation since I started, I am finding more support from State and Federal programs to help first time home buyers purchase their first home in the form of Down Payment Assistance Programs, these vary from state to state.
What part of the home loan process do customers find most difficult and how do you help them through it?
The biggest issues I have found, is around sourcing assets used for the down payment or closing costs. It is important to understand that funds moved from one account, or gifted from a family member have to be sourced upfront and a lot easier to keep track of if you take the time to do this upfront.
What are the top 3 misconceptions people have about the home loan process?
That once you get the UW approval you are done, there are so many decisions that buyers make, like changing jobs during the process or buying a car, that affects their approval. Once this happens, a lot of work has to be done to address and approve the loan.
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?
I like the Zillow App and am a contributor to the home buying question and answer section.
What resources could you recommend that borrowers use to learn more about the mortgage process and how to ensure a successful home closing?
By going to my website borrowers can see what the 5 major lenders rates are and pull down a number of eBooks on the mortgage process, refinancing and appraisals.
What can borrowers do to insure a smooth mortgage underwriting process?
Sign the mortgage application and get us the requested documents as soon as possible. If you have questions on what is needed ask me as soon as possible. The earlier you get us the documents the smoother the process. The devil is in the details, we need to figure out any issues upfront so we can resolve them.
Are you active in any local associations or community groups, and at what level? What goals and/or success have you helped these groups achieve?
I am on the Management Team for the Chicago NAPW Chapter ( and Co-chair a soup kitchen program for the Women's Club of Evanston ( where we feed over 100 people on Saturday's. In the past I lead a team of 1000 people from my Church during a conference to work for the day in 25 social service agencies through out Chicago in a one day event. We did everything from working with Veterans, to painting apartments for homeless teenagers and landscaping a homeless shelter.
Are you active in any fundraising organizations? What goals and/or success have you helped them achieve?
In the past, I was a board member for Teen Living Programs and during my 8 years on the board was able to raise a substantial amount of donations and brought on some key board members. Today I am part of the Emeritus Board of TLP and am involved in our 40th Anniversary Fund raiser Gala. I also raised $180,000 for a non-profit as a contract employee in 6 months.
Summary of where you grew up: family, affiliations, college, high school, etc.
I grew up in a Greek Family, one of five children to Nina and Tony Gaspar. Our family owned a small grocery store and all five kids worked our way through the University of Cincinnati at that store. I was active at NCH High School, played the French Horn, sang in Choir and was star of my high school musical! I played sports for my Greek Orthodox Church in Cincy and was in their Greek Dance Troup, and remained active to today! I attended the University of Cincinnati in the Business College and was the first woman president of Alpha Kappa Psi a business fraternity. I also created and launched the CSBS - an organization of all the presidents of the colleges business organizations to provide cohesive support for the business college in it's expansion pursuit.
What provides you with the most satisfaction in your job as a Loan Officer?
The joy of a closing for a first time home buyer - there is nothing as wonderful as seeing a person taking the keys of their first home.
What do you enjoy doing most in your spare time when you are not helping people with their home loans?
I do a lot with my family, I know that my teenage daughter will be off to college in a few years and relish every moment I get with her. I love to garden and grow vegetables and I cook most meals for my family - having dinner together is a priority to catch up and talk about what is happening in our lives.
Tell us something that makes you unique or something wacky, yet interesting about you?
Hey I am a Greek Girl and I love to cook Greek and DANCE!!

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