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Steven M. Levitt, CMPS, CRMS, Regional Production Manager, IL - Chicago 3940 HQ

Steven M. Levitt, CMPS, CRMS

Regional Production Manager
NMLS ID # 222993

steve.levitt@guaranteedrate.com

Phone: 800.921.2430

Cell: 847.921.2410

Fax: 800.921.2431

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Loan Officer Interview Q&A's

How long have you been in the mortgage business and what inspired you to get into it?
Steve has been in the mortgage industry since 1991. He continues to help first time homebuyers, move up buyers, real estate investors, those purchasing second homes, as well as clients who need to restructure their liabilities through refinancing. His role is to help you integrate the mortgage you select into your overall short and long-term financial and investment plan, to help you minimize taxes and interest expenses, and maximize your cash flow. Steve has passed the qualifying exams to earn the Certified Mortgage Planning Specialist (CMPS) designation, and is a recognized expert in the area of mortgage planning, cash flow management, and real estate equity management. Steve recently earned recognition from the National Association of Mortgage Brokers (NAMB), and became one of only a small percentage of mortgage professionals to attain the standing as a nationally recognized Certified Residential Mortgage Specialist (CRMS). This credential is only gained once a candidate has met certain requirements of experience, and has passed a rigorous written examination. His unique ability to focus on helping his mortgage clients build and protect wealth, by better managing their home equity and personal cash flow, has led to many satisfied clients and business partners. He is also a recognized speaker, author, and trainer.

What are the pros and cons of a fixed rate mortgage versus an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)?
The main advantage of a fixed-rate loan is that the borrower is protected from sudden and potentially significant increases in monthly mortgage payments if interest rates rise. The downside to fixed-rate mortgages is that when interest rates are high, qualifying for a loan is more difficult because the payments are less affordable. ARMs are attractive because they offer low initial payments, enable the borrower to qualify for a larger loan and in a falling interest rate environment, allow the borrower to enjoy lower interest rates (and lower mortgage payments) without the need to refinance. With an ARM, your monthly payment may change frequently over the life of the loan. And if you take on a large loan, you could be in trouble when interest rates rise - some ARMs are structured so that interest rates can nearly double in just a few years. If interest rates are high and expected to fall, an ARM will ensure that you enjoy lower interest rates without the need to refinance. If interest rates are climbing or a steady, predictable payment is important to you, a fixed-rate mortgage may be the way to go.

What part of the home loan process do customers find most difficult and how do you help them through it?
The most common issue during the home loan process is usually before closing when the title company prepares the HUD. Understanding escrows for taxes and credits from the sellers can be confusing for anyone from first time buyers to experienced home owners that are refinancing for the third time. I go over the HUD with the clients on purchases and refinances item by item before closing. I patiently answer any questions they might have until they fully understand.

What provides you with the most satisfaction in your job as a Loan Officer?
Being able to educate and help clients navigate through the mortgage process provides a high level of satisfaction. The mortgage industry is constantly changing, and your ability to adapt to the changes, while being able to articulate to your clients what is needed to ensure a smooth closing, has been both challenging yet rewarding. Having clients send you thank you gifts validates a job well done. However, there is no greater feeling than knowing others believe in you. So, having clients refer their friends, family, and co-workers, because they have the trust and confidence in your knowledge and experience, provides the most satisfaction in my job as a loan officer.

Tell us something that makes you unique or something wacky, yet interesting about you?
Aside from my job, being a husband, father of two boys, and coaching/playing sports, I love music. I have been collecting/trading live concerts/shows for 30+ years and have accumulated 1000's covering all genres of music. Don't be surprised if you see me at the next concert you go to.


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