How long have you been in the mortgage business? What awards have you won?
Prior to my current 12 years in the residential mortgage business, I was a mortgage bond trader for 14 years. During that time, I traded all of the mortgage products that I sell today. We were experts at knowing what drove rates up and down and when to expect one or the other. I use that experience today to advise my clients on when to lock in a rate if we expect a rise, or to hold off as I see rates being driven down with market conditions and forthcoming news. Having the latest economic data on my screens hourly, it is easy for me to track the flow of mortgage rates with the 40 lenders that I work with. These days, mortgage rates move hourly like stocks. Being able to assist in locking in the lowest interest rates for my clients by studying the trends has helped me keep a steady clientele and referral base. Let's face it, what client hasn't started out a conversation with, "what are your rates or is this a good time to lock?" THIS....is what I am good at!
What are the pros and cons of a fixed rate mortgage versus an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)?
Fixed rates vs. Adjustable. You have heard the cries about NEVER using an adjustable rate after what has happened in the economy. But sometimes, that adjustable rate is the perfect product for YOUR situation. If you know for sure that you won't be in that house for more than 3, 5, or maybe 7 years, why are you doing a 30 year? For the transferee, construction flipper, or someone who knows that this "starter" home will not be in the plans in a few short years, the "ARM" is probably the way to go. Rates and payments are much better than a 30 year and it is fixed while you are there. There is so much confusion regarding these loans and negative talk in the media that you need to find the perfect loan for your own situation. I make it very easy and understandable and guide you through the numbers and risks to see if this is for you. Know your options and then make the best decision for your life situation.
What can borrowers do to insure a smooth mortgage underwriting process?
Applying for a mortgage these days can be extremely stressful. Rules and guidelines have changed. Although the politicians want you to believe that they have made the process more transparent, they have made underwriting loans twice as hard. The paperwork trail that is asked for can be tedious. Knowing up-front what type of documentation will be needed helps tremendously in making for a smooth process. I have the "laundry list" that I send out prior to starting a loan. It helps clients collect what they usually have at home and lets them know what to be getting from sources that they do not have on hand. If documentation is ready from day 1, it makes for smooth sailing to underwriting. I do not start a loan until I know that I have all of the documents needed to get to a loan to closing. Being organized is the most helpful attribute to the loan process.
What provides you with the most satisfaction in your job as a Loan Officer?
I have been affiliated with mortgages one way or another for over 25 years. I have seen products and guidelines come and go. I have seen banks and other lenders come and go. The one thing that has not changed over the years is the satisfaction that I get by helping clients know the products that they are getting into, or finding a great option for their personal situation that they never even knew existed. I always tell people that after they close on their loan that they need to say to themselves, "this is the smartest thing we could have done." I am very good at what I do which makes it easy to come to the office every morning. You don't hear it often, but "I love my job". And I love helping people to understand a business, products and guidelines that I know inside and out.
Tell us something that makes you unique or something wacky, yet interesting about you?
When I have free time away from mortgages, I play competitive golf around the country. I competed in The World Amateur 9 times (finishing 2nd once) and various tournaments from coast to coast. Being in the mortgage business has taken the stress out of a tricky downhill breaking 6 footer for a win. If not golfing, spending time at my condo on the ocean in Myrtle Beach and being with friends at "Ocean Annnie's" is one of the best places you could be.