Why does it matter who you choose as your lender?
At Neighborhood Works, we value relationships and strengthening community. To help empower our clients, we think holistically about the entire process of buying and selling. For most of us, putting money down on a home represents the single largest financial investment we make. Of course, a major part of any home-buying experience is your mortgage. After all, without money, you won’t get far, especially in Portland’s tight market.
When you choose a lender, you may think the final numbers are the most important piece of the puzzle. And while rates and pre-approvals certainly do matter, your mortgage provider is another in the long line of relationships which can make or break your housing search. As such, it’s critical to consider the WHO behind this part of your experience.
Michael Knapp at River Capital has closed nearly 2,500 residential loans in the Portland metro area since 1996. What matters most, he says, is the relationship. “The entirety of a client’s situation is important. That’s why we start with a conversation, preferably eye-to-eye.” Over the course of the home-buying process, there are ups and downs, and just as you want a realtor who is responsive, the same is true with regards to a mortgage. You need to trust the people working to find your funding.
It’s likely that you’ve received a sales pitch or direct mail from a major bank offering low rates. Are these a good option? Maybe, but they often lack personal service. As Melissa Guthrie with Gold Star Financial in Portland points out, mortgage lenders can work with multiple banks, searching the best programs for each client. One loan may work for your neighbor, but won’t be best for you. “It helps to have a lender that will look at a borrower’s complete financial picture and help tailor a loan specific to their needs, “ Guthrie says. She goes on to note that quality is more important to her than quantity, and her goal as a lender is to be a partner and an advocate. Knapp echoes these sentiments: “For every client, we want to know the outcome of every scenario before any of them come to life.”
James Adair, with the PDX Home Loan Team, focuses on educating his clients so they can make the best long-term decisions. “Mortgages are so much more than simple rates and fees,” he says. His team looks not only at rates and fees, but tax benefits, real estate value over time, and other aspects that can affect how a specific loan will work for a specific property and/or client.
In every part of the real estate process, it’s important to have a personal connection, a place of trust. At Neighborhood Works, relationships are vital to our success and yours. We’ve worked with Michael, Melissa and James, and are happy to connect you with them if you are interested in buying or re-financing. Thanks for reading!