Depending on whether you are considering a purchase or a refinance will make a big difference. As stated earlier, most mortgage brokers have systems that facilitate tracking available mortgage rates & products for customers. What's more important is finding a broker that you trust and like. You may want to narrow your list down by requesting a 'Good Faith Estimate' that will define the various expenses related to their lending programs. That means you'll want to have a maximum purchase price in mind and a pre-approval for the necessary mortgage you'll require. In this way, you'll have a better idea who is offering you a fair (if not best) deal for your transaction. You can consult with your realtor or family and friends who might be able to recommend someone.
On the possibility that you are looking to refinance an existing mortgage, you may want to do a bit more research regarding your home's current market value. Many owners who acquired property in the past 3 or 4 years are finding that the current market value of their home is not different from the original purchase price and quite possibly lower. In that case, you must consider whether you put more than 20% down (or more) at the time of purchase. If not, then you run the risk that your equity is not 20% or greater. That may make a refinance not economically attractive since you might be required to purchase PMI (premium mortgage insurance). A lot will depend on the spread between your current mortgage rate and the 4.5% rate you desire. If you've had PMI all along then it may be worth it. The best person to make this determination is a mortgage broker.
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The best thing you can do for yourself is to commit to a local lender you want to work with and have them submit your loan papers to the bank ASAP. This is good practice for two reasons:
1. When rates drop violently, the window of opportunity is short. It's best to be waiting to pounce when that happens, not shopping around for rates and lenders.
2. If your loan papers are already in with the lender without a lock, you may be able to get that rate you want on a shorter lock period (7 or 15 days) which could help. AND....sometimes lenders with unlocked loans in their pipelines are willing to give concessions to close those loans.
Hope this helps,
In this market, many loan originators may not have time to provide a daily email. Not only are we in a "refi boom" but there are fewer of us around to serve clients.
Other things to keep in mind is that currently, people who are receiving a 4.5% rate have a significant amount of home equity (40% home equity or 60% LTV); 740 or better credit scores and they have provided a mortgage professional with a complete loan application and permission to lock. Often times when rates have been low enough to lock those who qualify for 4.5%, we only have an hour or so before the rate has adjusted and it's gone. By the time you receive an email and respond, the rate may be gone.
Instead of email,
Why not go down to your local mortgage co, find out if you qualify for a 4.5% loan, and if you do, will you need 20% down to get 4.5%?? Big difference!
If all is ok, run the docs, and have your loan guy call you the moment your rate hits your mark to lock in!
Much more effecient!