How long have you been in the mortgage business and what inspired you to get into it?
I have been in the mortgage business for over 10 years. After selling my software business 11 years ago, I was looking for something new and challenging. In mortgage banking I've found a rewarding career where I create strategies that help my clients achieve their short and long term financial and real estate objectives.
Who is your typical customer and what questions do they typically have?
For me there is no typical customer. I work with first time home buyers to seasoned real estate investors. From low to moderate income borrowers to high net worth individuals. The questions they have are as diverse as their backgrounds. My approach is to educate, advise and make sure every borrower knows what to expect throughout the entire process.
What specific steps do you use to help your customers find the best home loan for them?
It's all about communication. Asking the right questions and really listening to the answers is key. It's important to get a sense of where my clients are in their career as well as what their career trajectory might look like. Where will they be financially and/or geographically in 5, 10, or 20 years.
What are the pros and cons of a fixed rate mortgage versus an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)?
A fixed rate allows a consumer to manage their finances both short and long term based on the current fixed principle and interest payment. The ARM has a future payment that could be higher (or lower) than what the initial start payment is. There is a benefit to an ARM as after the first adjustment period, a borrower could end up with a lower payment depending on how much principle they have been able to pay down along with what the current index is that will determine their interest rate for the following 12 months. ARM loans can be as short as 3 years and as long as 10 years. Interest rates on ARMs are going to be lower than they are on 30 year fixed rates.
What part of the home loan process do customers find most difficult and how do you help them through it?
Through the years I've found that borrowers have the most frustration with sourcing large non payroll deposits. I review all client bank statements prior to sending the file to my underwriter. If I see a large deposit I work closely with the client to obtain the needed documentation. In many cases the borrower has multiple accounts and there's a good chance we may not even need that particular account. I always ask for the bank accounts with the least amount of activity.
What do you enjoy doing most in your spare time when you are not helping people with their home loans?
I enjoy spending time with my wife and daughter. I'm an avid road cyclist and like to get out on the road as often as my work allows. My other lifelong hobby and passion is playing jazz guitar.