Tips for choosing a good mortgage broker
Research the loan market
By researching the market, you will be able to make informed decisions based on the broker’s recommendations. A mortgage broker has access to a panel of lenders, so they can draw your attention to loan options that might not be available to you directly. However, you are better equipped to assess a mortgage broker’s recommendations if you have done your own research into the market. When you can assess a broker’s recommendations independently, you can work out from the beginning whether these recommendations are well suited for your circumstances in comparison to other options on the market.
Research a range of mortgage brokers
Mortgage brokers having varying areas of expertise and they can also charge clients in various ways. You need to find a mortgage broker with the expertise to give you valid advice, and you also need to understand how the broker will be paid for his services. Explain your personal situation, including your financial standing and your investment goals. Find out whether you need to pay any fees or whether the broker is paid wholly by commissions. If the broker is paid by commission, you need to assess whether this will influence their recommendations.
Check their qualifications and experience
Look up the qualification requirements for mortgage brokers in your area, and make sure your mortgage broker has the correct credentials. Unfortunately, you will find that some mortgage brokers set up business without the appropriate qualifications. Find out how long the broker has been in business, and ask to look at their lender panel – these are the lenders on the broker’s list and this will give you an idea.
Explain your needs
Ask each mortgage broker about their experience in relation to your specific type of loan. Different mortgage brokers specialize in different financial situations, such as home loans or investment loans. Also, if your financial situation raises red flags with lenders – for example, if you are self-employed or a contractor – you need a mortgage broker with the expertise and the network to help you find a lender who accepts these financial circumstances.
Ask for written confirmation
Your mortgage broker should give you a written report, outlining recommendations, and the reasoning behind each option, along with details of fees, products and commission. This way, you can take your time to assess each recommendation, and you have a written record of what you were promised.
Check their complaints process
It doesn’t hurt to think ahead! Just in case you later have a complaint about your broker, check out their complaints procedure to see if they are connected to an approved external dispute resolution scheme. This connection demonstrates that they will be held accountable for any poor service, giving you extra peace of mind that a potential dispute will be handled professionally.
Communication and Rapport
You need to feel comfortable talking to your mortgage broker, and maintain the confidence to ask questions and follow up if you still don’t understand something. If you feel awkward or confused, or if you aren’t comfortable asking questions, then this mortgage broker might not be the right fit for you. When you are making major financial decisions, you want to feel confident that you are fully informed and when you ask questions, you will receive prompt and detailed answers.