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Richard Zaleta

Branch Manager/VP of Mortgage Lending
110 West Las Tunas Drive, Suite A, San Gabriel, CA 91776
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NMLS: 219867
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Richard interview Q&A

How long have you been in the mortgage business and what inspired you to get into it?
I have been in the industry for 30 years and I got into the business to assist people to obtain their dream of home ownership.
Who is your typical customer and what questions do they typically have?
Mostly first time home buyers, and the questions are always what is the process and how do I qualify.
What specific steps do you use to help your customers find the best home loan for them?
First ask them what is the max that they can afford on a payment for a mortgage, second how is their credit, are you W-2 or self employed.
How long have you been in the mortgage business? What awards have you won?
30 yrs Top volume funder for the year at Countrywide Home loan my first year. Continued top funder for 3 years.
What are the pros and cons of a fixed rate mortgage versus an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)?
I always like a fixed loan versus an adjustable as most borrowers do not know the risk that they may face with an adjustable although they are typically safe.
What advice would you give new or first time home buyers?
Keep your credit in order, do not get in over your head in debt or on the monthly payment for the home. Just because I say you qualify does not mean that they can afford the payment.
How has the mortgage industry changed since you started, and what would you expect in the future?
When I started we did everything by hand no computers and no origination software. I see the industry getting more and more technical.
What part of the home loan process do customers find most difficult and how do you help them through it?
Gathering the initial paperwork needed. I just ask them to make it as simple as possible try not to make it too difficult.
What are the top 3 misconceptions people have about the home loan process?
1. Too hard to qualify. 2. You need perfect credit to get a loan. 3. Takes too much paperwork.
What can borrowers do to insure a smooth mortgage underwriting process?
Keep everything as is when you were qualified do not change anything do not change jobs do not open new credit accounts do not transfer funds from one account to another.
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?
The Montebello Chamber of Commerce Golf chairmen and we raised more money than ever the year I ran the tournament.
Are you active in any fundraising organizations? What goals and/or success have you helped them achieve?
The Los Angeles Boys and Girls club I have been collecting toys for Christmas for them for 3 years and have collected over 200 toys each year.
Summary of where you grew up: family, affiliations, college, high school, etc.
Grew up in Lincoln Heights, US Navy veteran.
What provides you with the most satisfaction in your job as a Loan Officer?
Seeing a family move into their first home.
What do you enjoy doing most in your spare time when you are not helping people with their home loans?
Play Golf, watch movies, attend family functions.

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