I'm happy to introduce one of our partners for many years now, Joe Sammut, Mortgage Planner with Mortgage Architects an established national Mortgage Brokerage, led by a seasoned management team and supported by a network of experienced and caring Mortgage Brokers. They help homeowners ask the right questions, compare mortgage rates and privileges, design a mortgage based on their clients' needs, and they understand how to make mortgages work for buyers. Joe is an independent Mortgage Broker and one of the founding partners of Mortgage Architects. He and his Mortgage Gate Team of professionals are committed to making their clients' mortgage experience an effortless and rewarding one.
Patrick & I will conduct regular interviews with Joe and other partners and resources in the real estate industry in the hope of providing you with useful information. If you have a question for any of our specialists or if there is a specific topic you want us to address, email Chantal at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to bring you the info.
Chantal: Welcome Joe, lets get to it. How do you and the buyers figure out what they can afford to spend on a property?
Joe: We begin with a conversation that gives us an idea of a clients current financial snapshot. We look at their amount of income and how it is structured. IE salary vs self employed income. We then look at their debt levels to get an idea of what they owe. Lastly, we discuss their comfort level, how much of their income are they comfortable putting towards their mortgage, taxes, utilities, insurance and maintenance. What is their desire for more or less available income for lifestyle?
Chantal: Why is it important for buyers to get pre-approved and what does that mean?
Joe: A true preapproval is a process where we provide a lender with details of the client’s current financial picture and the lender then underwrites the file and determines the mortgage amount at which the client can afford to borrow. We then add their available downpayment and that determines their purchase price limit. A client that knows exactly what their affordability is can narrow their search and focus on properties that fall within their price range. They have confidence, knowing they are shopping within their personal means.
Patrick: Tell me Joe, what can a Mortgage Planner do for buyers?
Joe: A mortgage planner or broker represents the client directly with the lenders. Mortgage brokers are licensed professionals that specialize in mortgages. They walk the clients through the application process and ensure that they are best cared for throughout the life of the mortgage. Brokers review all conditions of the mortgage, not just rate, but terms and conditions that fit the borrowers lifestyle and future plans. Should life throw changes, we are there to help make changes to the mortgage wherever possible to keep the clients satisfied.
Patrick: How is a Mortgage Planner or Mortgage Broker different than a Mortgage Specialist at the buyers' bank?
Joe: Mortgage specialists with a bank may be very good at what they do, but their limitations are found in the options they can offer the client. One bank, one set of products. They are often provided incentives and given mandates to sell other bank products and services such as insurance, investments and banking packages. Mortgage brokers provide mortgage guidance. We work for the client not the bank!
Patrick: What information do buyers need to get ready to show a Mortgage Planner?
Joe: It is always helpful to work with a client that has information at hand. There are a number of standard conditions that need to be satisfied for a lender whether the client is working with a broker or not. T4 slips, 3 years tax returns and/or Notice of Assessments along with a job letter to prove income are a starting point. We will also need a copy of the property listing and purchase agreement in the event it is a purchase instead of a refinance or mortgage renewal. Proof of downpayment is also necessary by way of bank statements and investment statements.
Chantal: How long does it take for you to let buyers know how much they can afford?
Joe: 20 minutes by phone is often long enough for us to gather facts on the client’s income and debt situation, providing all information can be supported by documentation later in the process. Some require an application to be supplied to a potential lender to ensure that the client meets their requirements. This process can be completed in 24 to 48 hours.
Thank you Joe, we're going to do this again soon.
Remember, if you have any questions for Joe, just email us at email@example.com.
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