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What You Need to Know

Displaying mortgage rates without proper explanation, can be very misleading. Most broker and bank rate sites list an array of their lowest mortgage rates, however unless you have the required qualifications that haven’t been listed, these rates might be meaningless and lead to disappointment by some – i.e. might feel a bit like “bait and switch”.

Being quoted a mortgage interest rate today without being asked following questions, is much like asking a doctor who you are visiting for the first time to prescribe you a medication, without learning your symptoms, your medical history and perhaps taking a few tests. It just can’t be done.

Here are the key factors that a responsible mortgage broker needs to know before quoting a you rate:

  • Credit scores of all applicants and credit history;
  • Down payment or equity in the existing home;
  • Purpose of mortgage (purchase, switch, refinance, etc.);
  • Employment or self-employment details and ability to confirm income;
  • Property location, home type, use and condition of property and zoning;
  • Prepayment privileges, penalties, features and future flexibility;
  • Size of mortgage and purchase price of home;
  • When the funds are required; and
  • Term of mortgage being requested, and fixed term vs. variable rate.

With this information in hand, an experienced mortgage broker can often quote you a rate, or range of rates that might be available to you, subject to satisfactorily confirming the above. At times, they may even have to make a few calls for special purpose loans, and get back to you with what has been learned.

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