So, you need a loan to buy the house of your dreams. And you’ve decided to hire a qualified mortgage broker to find the right loan for you. (Learn about the benefits of working with a mortgage broker over a bank).
But how do you choose the best home loan broker for you? And how should you prepare for a successful first meeting?
Step 1 – Finding the right Mortgage broker
As with many services, word-of-mouth recommendations from friends, family or colleagues can be a great way of finding a quality broker. But if you don’t receive any recommendations from people you know, try searching online for brokers in your local area.
Once you’ve found a few brokers, look for independent client reviews on Google, Facebook or other sources. These can be a fantastic way of learning what people like or dislike about a broker’s service, their approach and whether past clients would recommend them to others.
Then take a look at each broker’s website and social media page to learn about their experience, knowledge, the types of loans they specialise in and the lenders they work with.
Also look into their qualifications and whether they’re accredited. In Australia home loan brokers only need a Certificate 4 to practice. But brokers who hold the higher Diploma qualification may be able to offer better financial advice. And brokers accredited by the Mortgage and Finance Association of Australia (MFAA) must follow a strict code of practice, which ensures they’re professional and gives them access to additional loan products and lenders than unaccredited brokers.
It’s also worth finding out whether the broker offers any value adds to clients. For example, at Mel finance, we’ll generate a detailed suburb report, property profile report, and in some cases, automated valuations for clients at no cost. These services help clients make an informed decision about where to buy and how much to pay. Services like this can make all the difference in your property search.
Step 2 – Considering your goals and questions
Once you’ve found your broker and arranged an appointment, take some time to think about your home loan goals and questions before your first meeting. This will help your mortgage broker give you the right information from the start and avoid any delay in securing your loan.
Consider both your short and long-term financial goals, borrowing needs and your existing knowledge and uncertainties about the home loan process. You may want to learn more about the different loan types, interest rates, additional fees, your borrowing capacity, terms and conditions, the broker’s lender relationships, how they work, typical timeframes for loan settlements, etc. It’s a good idea to write down your questions to take to your first meeting.
Step 3 – Completing your pre-approval information
Your broker may ask you to answer questions about your assets, expenses and employment history before you meet. Take the time to complete this information before your appointment so your broker can start to assess your borrowing capacity and options.
Step 4 – Preparing your documents
You’ll need to provide your broker with various documents to lodge with your loan application. These may include income statements, identification, a list of assets and liabilities, past borrowing documentation and transaction histories. Gather as many of these as you can to bring to your first appointment so your mortgage broker can get the ball rolling on your loan as soon as you meet. Your broker will keep your information confidential and only pass it onto the relevant lender/s.
Speak to your broker to find out which documents you need to provide.
Need more expert financial advice to secure your home loan?
As highly qualified and accredited home loan brokers, Mel Finance will offer you a professional mortgage broking service, personalised to meet your needs. We’re dedicated to finding the best loan for your circumstances. Contact us today to discuss the best financial arrangement for you.