Financing in Manassas>Question Details

Jen H, Home Buyer in Manassas, VA

How do I find a reputable lender in another city? I've been told not to go with one that is affiliated with my realtor.

Asked by Jen H, Manassas, VA Wed Jul 27, 2011

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Well then you are on your own, Realtors do not recommend lenders because they get a commission from them, they do it to make it easier for you!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 28, 2011
Not using someone because they are not local is silly: Is Wells or Chase headquartered in Manassas?
One of the guys who answered your question is Shane Milne; I am very familiar with his and the knowledge and integrity that he shows is exemplary. Why shouldn't he be considered?

Good luck and may God bless
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
I would also strongly recommend that you use someone in the area where you are purchasing your home, and not someone that is located out of the area and not nearly as accountable should something go wrong during the process. Local lenders rely on local Realtors for the majority of their business, and they have to provide good service and keep their word. There is very little recourse against an internet lender if you get to the settlement table and the terms have changed or the rate is different or the costs are higher. Just saying...
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
"I've been told not to go with one that is affiliated with my realtor." - while there are some "in house" mortgage companies that real estate agents blindly recommend their buyers to whether how good they are or not, there are also real estate affiliated mortgage lenders that can offer great terms and excellent service.

You may want to start with the internet to seek out individual loan officers rather than mortgage lenders, including the "Find a Pro" feature here at Trulia. Your experience will have a higher likelihood of being "hit or miss" if you seek out lenders rather than individuals, since with a lender you get good and bad individuals, but with an individual you get a referral to or you carefully select, the chances of them turning out to be a mortgage professional you'll strongly consider is excellent.

Most loan officers lend at least statewide, and a lot of loan officers can lend in multiple states, by way of individual licensing or being part of a bank (such as I am), so you may be able to find a loan officer where you are currently at who can help with the purchase in the other city even if it's in another state. If you can't find a loan officer in the area you are in that can help you buy where you are buying, then there is also a good chance that the loan officer in your area who you liked can recommend someone who can lend in the area you are buying in.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011

You got a lot of GREAT info from other posters. I would ask the same question "who told you that and why?" It may or not be true. All I can tell you is how I would approach it and you can go from there. I believe local is better in many cases. I have closed loans in different states and there are MANY quirks and just little different things from state to state, county to county and even city to city. Even in a small state like MD. I can write loans in eight states VA being one of them. I do enough VA business that I am comfortable but there are differences between MD and VA that are important. But if my bank was suddenly licensed in CA that would be totally different for me and it would make me nervous. I know nothing about loans in that state. Not that I couldn't do it but someone local would have the edge on me in many ways. Like Shane. One good thing about using the realtors agent, they are accountable to said agent to come thru and close on time. One bad thing, there are real estate companies that push and push hard to get their agents to refer to their preferred title company, in house lender and even insurance company. I have had agents tell me they get pressured and incentivized to do so. One of my former companies paid us to use the preferred title company. I never did by the way I didn't think they did a good job and used my own. So no matter what you hear it DOES happen. I also would ask for recommendations from the loan officer. I would also Google their name and see what pops up as well. I do this when I don't know a person or company that I am dealing with now. Also important is whether they are a broker or a direct lender. Do they have an UW there on site to make the decisions? Trust me that is HUGE. I was a mortgage broker for seven years and a mortgage banker for just over one year. There is no comparison to which one is better for my clients. I never knew how the other half lived. Then is also comes down to just the personality of you and the loan officer. Some click, some don't . Talk to 2-3 local loan officers and see which one has the best program, rate and track record. The rates are all in the same range and so are the fees for the most part. So again it boils down to who is willing to work hard and close on time. We all say we can and will do that but how do YOU KNOW. That's why I Google. Anyway hope this helped and please let me know if I can be of service.…
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 28, 2011
Whoever told you that gave you incomplete, and likely bad, advice.

I'm with a regional real estate company (and they've got lots of offices in Manassas) that has an ownership position in a lender. It's actually a joint venture between the real estate company and Wells Fargo. So even though we'd refer you to "XYZ Mortgage," it's Wells Fargo that's handling the real work. And they tend to be very competitive. Not always the best, but almost always worth considering. That's not a plug for them specifically--just pointing out that whoever gave you that advice was misinformed.

Also, as is pointed out below, a Realtor isn't going to receive any additional commission or compensation if you happen to use an affiliated lender. It's just that the agent knows your loan is far more likely to go through (and so the agent will make whatever commission he/she is entitled to from the sale) than if you just selected someone who advertised online.

Finally, you should get competing offers. Rates do vary. So there's nothing wrong with considering the lender who's affiliated with your Realtor among the several you'll be talking to.

Hope that helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 28, 2011
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Fairfax, VA
Hey Jen,

It is a very good question. There are many lenders to choose from locally. Wells Fargo, Chase etc and I would recommend that you shop around. Shop the origination fees, interest rates as well as Title Search, recording fees and Title Insurance costs. A little homework on your part could save you hundreds if not thousands over the life of the loan. Here are 4 things you should keep in mind:

1.) Do not let multiple lenders run a credit check on you. This will hurt your credit score. Do your shopping for a loan without letting multiple lenders run your credit, they will ultimately destroy your credit score.
2.) Refrain from purchasing anything on credit before you close, this could jeopardize your ability to qualify for the loan and they check right up to closing.
3.) If you are putting 20% down, you need to look hard at the Title Insurance. It normally only covers the loan balance not your equity. Inquire with your Real Estate Attorney about getting the insurance to cover the entire transaction. (Especially if you are purchasing a REO home)
4.) Finally, your Realtor gets absolutely nothing for the referral to his/her preferred lender. He or she is making a recommendation based upon past experience and is trying to look out for your best interests. But it is up to you to find the absolute best deal when it comes to a mortgage.

I wish you the very best and hope you find the best deal for a loan possible.

The Best,
Timothy Clemmons
CBRB Manassas, Va 20109
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Consistent with all prior recommendations, I am going to say that whoever gave you that blanket advice, while they probably meant well, gave you bad advice. The only thing a REALTOR gets out of referring you to a lender is the confidence of knowing you're getting a good deal, being treated fairly and honestly and that you will get to the closing table, on time. While there are exceptions to every rule, if your agent is a full time agent that does a good business, they will have more than one great lender to suggest to you... and I think you should consider them heavily. Ask your REALTOR how many loans has this person closed for you? Has he/she been with their current bank for very long? How many loans has he/she closed for you since being with this bank? If you're getting good answers there, you're probably on easy street. I do feel strongly that you should use someone local, and a lender (not a broker, with few exceptions) and someone you can physically see. Further, I like lenders who have an underwriter they can talk to personally before you get all the way down the road to closing - it prevents last minute scrambling and hiccups in the process. Not only will a lender as I described be able to provide you with personal service and know he/she is accountable, not only to you but to your agent, but someone who works in the area where you're buying will know there way around any local programs that might be able to help you (most states and localities have special home buyer programs, generally they are targeted toward lower/moderate income first time home buyers, but some are widely available or available based on your position or employer). Best of luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
We have 2 lenders who we like to recommend based on their knowledge, integrity, work ethic, customer service, & experience. If your Realtor is recommending a mortgage lender it is usually a safe recommendation. The Realtor is representing your best interests and has a personal investment in making sure you work with the best lender they can recommend. If the agent has suggested a certain lender it's because they trust this individual based on past job performance(s). Listed below are 2 lenders we completely trust to do great work for you and anyone trying to qualify for a loan

John Sawall
Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
Office: 703-583-8149
Mobile: 703-401-1709

Ken Malinowski
New American Mortgage
Phone: 434-249-3444

We hope this information is useful for you.

Dwayne & Maryanne Moyers
Managing Broker
Avery-Hess Realtors (Lake Ridge Office)
Top 2% of Realtors Nationwide
(540) 379-7359 (Maryanne)
(540) 446-6284 (Dwayne)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Hello Jen,

Are you looking for a lender in Manassas? I'm curious as to why you were told not to go with the lender that is affiliated with your Realtor. You should talk with the Realtor's lender, and if you feel it necessary, talk with a few other lenders, but do not allow each lender to run your credit report. I was a lender for 28 years and am now a Realtor in Woodbridge and would be happy to recommend Rob Heltzel in Manassas. Rob has been a lender in Manassas for 20+ years, knows what is going on in the mortgage industry and is up-to-date on lending guidelines. He is located on Forestwood Avenue in Manassas and can be reached at Rob is very reputable and a great guy. Keep in mind, though, that your Realtor's in-house lender is most likely a very good lender and has probably worked hard to maintain a good relationship with the Realtors in his/her office. In-house lenders have to be very accountable because they are right there in the office and their reputation (and future business) depends upon them doing a good job for you.
Hope that helps!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
Most of my clients and customers look at more than one lender. They get a feel for them and what works best for their financial situation. Good lenders will almost always be about the same rate-wise. So the decision could be based on service or even who you currently bank with.

Havng said that, many buyers have asked for who I would recommend. A good agent knows who can close the loan on time, and that is a major factor.

Hope this helps!
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
I would like to ask you a question. Who told you that? When I refer a client to a lender, it is because I know that person is one of the best in their field of business. I also know that they can and will get the job done and not lead my client (and ultimately myself) down a bad path. Sometimes friends or family members that have a bad experience for one reason or another may not know that your agent probably has your best interest at heart. I know that I always do! Good luck. If you need help with a loan, my friend at Susquehanna Bank in MD also handles loans in VA. He is awesome! Give him a call at 410-404-0095. Your lender just has to be licensed in the state you are purchasing a home in to be able to lend you money on your purchase. Bob has been in the business for years and is very reputable. I hope you will give him a call.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
The person who said that is likely not very familiar with the real estate & mortgage business. A good realtor will have a handful of lenders that they trust and work with to you refer you to. Ultimately, it's your decision who you work with but don't be afraid to speak with a lender your realtor refers you to.

In what city are you looking for a lender?

Elliott R. Oliva
Mortgage Banker | nmls #353884
Prime Residential Mortgage
202.681.1636 direct
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 27, 2011
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