Pick a Realtor that appears to be professional, ethical and seems to fit what you're looking for in a Realtor. The good Realtors don't have to resort to trying to such tactics.
"It is unfortunate that some Realtors are nothing more than retired folk simply limping along trying to earn a few bucks to supplememt their retirement or pension."
Felan, I'm not even a Realtor and I know it's against the Realtor Code of Ethics to talk negatively about other Realtors. I happen to be one of those "retired folks" and take offense to your repugnant, cynical, somewhat negative connotation that you seem to want to make about older (probably much more experienced) Realtors.
Is your Broker okay with you making these sort of negative statements about older Realtors?
There may be a better way without spending $1500 on credit repair or wasting time doing it by yourself.
I offer a program that does not use FICO scores. I do look at the credit report for recent behavior however. If you have limited credit open that's OK as long as you pay rent and the utilities like clockwork, and have no collections or write-offs in at least 12 months.
You'll need to have enough saved to fund your escrow account, and show at least one month's payment in reserve (about $4500 for a $150K purchase). Based on what you've said about your debts vs. income you should be OK (you must stay below 40% of your gross income for all credit accounts including the desired mortgage).
My program requires NO down payment of closing costs. We only offer a 30-year fixed, which was 3% on Friday. Go to http://www.NACA.com for detailes, or email me at JLyng@NACA.com.
George D. Felan, M. Ed. (UNT & TCU degreed!!)
Ready Real Estate
You are certainly free to conduct your business the way you choose. But then you should not come on here and make sour comments about how other Realtors choose to conduct their business. It IS coverd by the Code fo Ethics, by the way. Your method of dumping a prospective buyer in the lap of a loan officer only works if the buyer has good credit scores. If you choose not to work with people who have credit issues, that's OK. ~Then don't reply to a Trulia question from someone who obviously has low scores. They can't get approved for a loan by calling YOU. They need help from someone who not only has the patience to work on the details of their credit report, but the knowledge of how to "package" it before they go to a loan officer and submit an application.
Perhaps you have never seen anyone rejected for a loan when they called a loan officer too soon. There are some things you just can't tell a loan officer. He would not be allowed by his company to cover them up once they are on the record. Prospective buyers sometimes have to get their financial house in order BEFORE they go fill out a loan applicaiton. Only an experienced professional can give them that kind of advice. What you have offered on this blog, certainly will not work for Jake and others in a situation like his.
Please stop trying to put me down because I "dabble in credit repair." I have the knowledge and the experience to know how to help people bring their credit scores up. I offer that service (free of charge) to my clients, and then they find that they can buy a house in the shortest amount of time. Loan officers do not have any "magic." They can only help people to a limited degree with low credit scores, and then their hands are tied by the underwriter's guidelines. They are duty bound not to commit fraud when submitting a loan application to underwriting, and there are Federal restrictions as well. Some people just want a hint of how to "package" their application so it will get consideration when a loan officer or an underwriter looks at it. If you can't help them with that sort of thing, then move over and let someone else who can. Contrary to one of your statements, it DOES seem like you came here to debate issues. (Some of which you don't seem to know much about.) You certainly may advertise the services that you offer to people. But you are not permitted to put down the services that another Realtor offers to the public --- by the very Code of Ethics that you have subscribed to.
The buyers don't care about your success as a real estate agent. They just want to know what they have to do to get a house!
ULTRA Real Estate Services
Jake, I don't have to post paragraphs of justifications for what I do in my business. I only suggest you actually communicate with agents to find out for yourself who will be best for you.
Did you notice that Tony Perez pulled all his comments off of here?
Yes, it is possible for a person to delete their own remarks on Trulia, and that seems to be what he has done. This may make it difficult for some of you who are reading my comments to follow the references that were made to his blogs.
Let that be a lesson to others who follow. If you post incorrect information, or bad advice, on this website, other Realtors will speak up to let the public know what is the truth.
Trulia is about the Truth.
We want buyers (and sellers) to get straight answers to their questions.
...and to all a goodnight!
ULTRA Real Estate Serivces
No one on here seems to be addressing your specific questions. This is because they are mostly real estate agents who really don't know much about credit reports. I have not heard of anyone in today's world making a loan for a FICO score as low as 554, so we will need to work hard on your wife's credit report. There are a few lenders who will go below 640, but not too many. Your score of 627 is close enough to work with, and I think I can help you with that project. You might be able to purchase a house without using your wife's credit and income, but that is a complicated issue that cannot be addressed herein. You will need to contact me for an appointment to get into that level of detail. (Did you know that there are "3" scores that matter to a lender? You may be looking at the wrong one.)
Your car debt will not hurt you, and if you have been making monthly payments on time, it will actually help you! Your other credit issues are what is important. Sounds to me like you (and your wife) have some negative issues that are pulling your score down. We will need to work on removing those from your credit report BEFORE you go talk to a loan officer. You probably also need to add some positive references to your credit report before the score will come up to a level where a mortgage underwriter will approve it for a loan. We have a software program that will help us run a hypothetical score on your report, and get it ready to go before we send it to an underwriter for approval.
~Mr. Perez said "I have 'one' that I can refer you to..." ---We shall have to assume he meant a loan officer that he likes. But this is NOT the correct path for people in your situation. You and your wife have things you need to clean up before you go talk to a loan officer. If you just follow Mr. Perez's advice, you will find yourself in trouble, and likely to be rejected for a loan. Then the favored loan officer will just tell you to pay your bills on time, and come back next year. (And I don't mean 2013, either!)
There are very few real estate agents out there who can really help you. That is why they all say "I know a good loan officer." You really need to talk to someone who specializes in credit repair. There are some things that you can do which will make your credit application look acceptable to the loan officer. He can't do them for you. My years of experience have taught me some tricks which will help many people get approved for a loan. And if Mr. Perez will contact me directly, I will gladly share them with him.
Don't waste any more time fooling around on the internet; get in touch with an experienced Realtor who can represent you as the buyer in the transaction. (...even if you are thinking of buying a new house from a builder.)
We have the resources to help you become a homeowner, and get settled in your own home before next Summer. I know your family will appreciate that.
Merry Christmas! ...And let's have a Happy New Year in a new house!
ULTRA Real Estate Services
Just so you'll know, and for Mr.Perez's benefit, I used to work for a company that did credit repair. I went through the training programs, and I am a Certified Instructor in Credit Repair. I could teach Mr. Perez a few things about the topic. I did not claim to be licensed, because THERE IS NO LICENSE for credit repair! Even a mortgage loan officer does not have a license for credit repair, and the people who will charge you $400 or $800 are not licensed, either. I offered to assist you at no charge, because youi don't need to be scammed by somebody who will just take your money and not help you get a house.
The real problem here is that you are not ready to go talk to HIS loan officer and have them look at your credit report. They will ask you all kinds of personal financial questions, and you will bare your soul to them. Once you tell them something, youi can't take it back. You, and many other people in a similar situaton as yours, need to have some counselling BEFORE you go speak with a loan officer. Sure, every Realtor wants to send you to their favorite loan officer, and we all know a very good one(!), but that is because they just want to have control over you and which agent you use to purchase a house. What you need to hear are the things that you need to do, and the things you need to be aware of, BEFORE you go fill out an application with a loan officer at a bank or mortgage company. I will sit down with you and make sure you are aware of these things, and then when you and your credit report are READY, you can go to the loan company of your choice.
I have seen many people in the past who wanted to buy a house and did not know where to start. They would have been summarily rejected by a mortgage company had they applied to one in the beginning. And that would have resulted in another inquiry on their report, which lowers your FICO score. Not what you need. I have consulted with people in the past who could only get a loan to buy a house IF the application were packaged in such a way as to be acceptable to the underwriter. Sometimes we have to do things up front BEFORE we talk to the mortgage company that will put your information in a good light, and make it look acceptable to the people who will be ultimately approving your loan. You don't want to get rejected before you start!
You can't lie on your mortage application, (---that would be fraud---), so you have to be sure that you have all your ducks in a row before you fill out the application. And if your credit score needs repairing, then you DON'T have all your ducks in a row. That is why you need to speak with an experienced counselor who can help you get prepared for the loan process, and not some brand new agent who really doesn't know anything about it. Any agent with their license can unlock the front door of a house for you to walk through it. Any agent can take you to a loan officer and get a person with very good credit approved to buy a house. But it takes a skilled and experienced agent to help someone with credit issues to resolve those issues before you stumble into a mortgage company's office!
One last comment for Tony Perez, and other new agents: It does not take a "license" to help someone straighten out their credit score; it takes knowledge. Most agents don't know much about the algorithms that are used to create the FICO and Beacon scores, and they have no clue how to bring a person's score up. It is complicated, and that is why they always suggest you speak to a "loan officer." What they don't tell you is that the loan officer is going to reject your application because your credit score doesn't meet their minimum criteria for loan approval. Then you'll be depressed, instead of on your way to purchasing your first home.
Mr. Perez stated that he doesn't want to work with you, until after you go do some work of your own. That is his perogative. But I choose to work with people who need extra help and attention to the details of their credit report before they are ready to start looking at houses, and making loan applications to the bank. So ~call me if you want real help.
ULTRA Real Estate Services
If you are looking for an experienced Agent who can help you through the entire home-buying process, please give me a call. I have been helping first-time homebuyers here in the Fort Worth area for over 32 years. Some of the comments you have received on this site are not very accurate or to the point. Please don't believe everything you hear.
I am one agent who CAN help you through the credit review process and guide you to get ready to apply for a loan. Calling a loan officer and having them pull your credit report is NOT the correct first step. You need someone who knows enough about credit scoring to help you prepare for the lending process. I am a Certified Instructor in Credit Repair, and I can show you how to bring that FICO score up. You may not have to wait too long, and once I get a look at your credit report, I'll let you know what needs to be done before you contact a mortgage company. You don't want another inquiry to lower your FICO score, so be careful who you talk to. There are some real estate agents who know nothing about credit reports, or how to get ready to apply for a loan.
If you decide to arrange an appointment with me, there is no fee. I will get paid by the seller's broker when you buy a house. But in the meantime, there is no charge for my service. I can also give you some good financial advice, though I am not an SEC licensed broker. I am, as well, an Energy Consultant, and can help you get a really good rate on your electric bill.
Our first job is to prepare you for the loan application. Then we will determine the type of houses you and your wife wish to look at, and we'll go out and inspect a few. Once you select the house you like, I will help you submit an offer on it. I will be your negotiator, and will work hard on your behalf. Then, when we have a contract, I'll guide you through the whole process, and make sure we have a smooth closing. I will be there at the title company to "hold your hand" and make sure everything is set up as you expected it to be, and then you'll be signing the papers to become a proud new homeowner!
Feel free to text me or send an email at any time. I am available right away to help you get started down the path to homeownership.
ULTRA Real Estate Services
As a matter of a fact, Mr. Felan, I'll take you up on your offer.. I'll sign up for you to be my Buyer Rep. for the next six months. Please let me know when you can send me my $500 check!
You are so close I would put you together with a loan officer to see what can be done for you. Please feel free to contact me directly.