5 Things to look for when choosing a mortgage broker
Tempted to go straight to your current bank to secure your home loan?
We’re not here to tell you you shouldn’t do it — after all, it is perfectly okay to do so. We’re here to tell you, however, that because every situation is unique and circumstantial, heading straight to your lender may not always pan out. You may actually end up paying more than you realise!
This is where mortgage brokers add the most value. In this article, we’ve put together the top 5 things to look for when choosing a mortgage broker, to make your decision easier.
What is a mortgage broker?
A mortgage broker is someone who helps you get the most out of buying or selling property. They offer guidance on mortgages, loan applications, and other services related to your credit and financial situation.
They’re not aligned to one bank or lender, so they’re able to assess your situation and needs across multiple products. If you do decide to go with a mortgage broker, then finding a mortgage broker to get on board you is the next challenge.
What do mortgage brokers do?
Mortgage brokers are professionals who offer financial services and advice to home buyers and property investors. They provide their clients with expert guidance and assistance throughout the entire buying process.
There are several types of mortgage brokers. Some specialise in helping people buy or sell homes, while others focus on assisting people in getting finance for their business, cars, etc.
A good mortgage broker should be able to offer valuable information about the housing market and the different loans available. They should also be knowledgeable about the local real estate market based on the people they have been helping recently. They tap into their expertise from years of experience to help you find the best possible deal for your situation.
How do mortgage brokers work?
Mortgage brokers play a crucial role in helping buyers get into their dream homes. They sell mortgages and manage the entire loan process from start to finish. How does this work?
Mortgage brokers are financial intermediaries who act as matchmakers between homebuyers and lenders. At North Brisbane Home Loans, our mortgage brokers don’t charge any fees for our house loan services since our commission comes from the lender.
A mortgage broker helps borrowers shop around for the best rates and terms. They also negotiate lower interest rates and fees, and can often provide other benefits such as financing assistance and insurance referrals so you and your assets are protected.
Why use a mortgage broker?
Some prospective home buyers think going straight to the bank is a better option. While it’s perfectly fine to do that, they are missing out on a world of opportunities that using a mortgage banker can help them get access to.
Most do not know where to start. They might start by jumping online, punch in some figures to work out a loan, or ask some families and friends what they did.
Whilst these people mean well and will tell you information they think would benefit you, the mortgage lending space is very dynamic and it’s moving all the time around things like deposit amounts, income policy, appetite from lenders, Covid-19 implications, fixed vs variable, to name just a few — it’s a big list to get across.
There is so much to get on top of when trying to choose or find a mortgage broker. But rest assured, every mortgage broker — or at least a good mortgage broker — will always work in your best interests as we are under legal obligation to do so.
Watch the video below as our CEO Pat Cranshaw explains why using a mortgage broker is the best route when purchasing your first property.
How to Choose a Mortgage Broker?
So how and where does one start to find a mortgage broker?
Here are the top 5 things to look for when choosing the best mortgage broker in Brisbane.
1. You Want Them To Do Their Research
A great mortgage broker will want to get to know you from the second they start engaging with you. This allows them to understand your lifestyle so that when it comes to advising on the best home loan, they’ll know exactly what you’re after and what suits you. It’s definitely not a good sign if your broker wants to push you through as soon as possible.
Trust your instincts and go with a broker that feels right for you. And if you need some reassurance, doing some research yourself into their google reviews is a great start.
Google My Business is our favourite. As an example, North Brisbane Home Loans has a five-star Google review rating from over 200 Google Reviews.
2. Experience Is Essential
This goes without saying, but you’ll want to know that the mortgage broker you choose is experienced.
So what makes an experienced and good mortgage broker? We all know you have to start somewhere in the industry, however, a good rule of thumb is to look for a broker with at least five years or more experience. But again, trust your instincts.
You might also want to check out their education credentials, as not just anybody can be a mortgage broker. Mortgage brokers are trained and licensed and are experts in communicating between borrowers and lenders. All good brokers, at a minimum, will have the following 3 things:
- Certificate IV or a diploma in Finance & Mortgage Broking
- Operates under an Australian Credit Licence (ACL) – obtained through the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). A broker will either have their own ACL or be a Credit Representative of a Licensee
- They are a member of a professional organisation such as the MFAA or the FBAA
3. Transparency Is Key
The first thing to know about mortgage brokers is how they get paid. Most Australian mortgage brokers don’t have a fee associated with their services because they’re paid a commission by the lenders once your loan is secured. It’s also important to know who is on the mortgage broker’s lenders panel.
A diverse lending panel is a great sign, as you know that they won’t just be trying to sell you the one product or the product they receive the most commission from.
4. They ask LOTs of questions
A mortgage broker is inquisitive about your individual financial circumstances as they need to have a full understanding of your situation and how best they can help you.
Ideally, they should start the conversation by asking questions like “What is your goal when buying a house?”, “How long do you plan to stay at the property?”, ”Do you currently own another property?”, and “Are there any changes to your personal finances that might affect your ability to qualify for a loan?”.
Your answers to these questions will help them assess whether you meet the requirements of your home loan application and if you could benefit from any additional features.
They also give indispensable advice on what type of loan structure suits your circumstances, including fixed rate versus variable rate products, and whether you prefer an owner occupied or investment property. Your broker should be prepared to discuss all aspects of your borrowing options, including the pros and cons of each option.
5. Their clients are happy
What better way is there to verify how good a mortgage broker is other than checking out their reviews? A reputable mortgage broker will have happy clients who are happy to leave a review for mortgage broker services they provided. You will usually find these social proofs on their Google My Business listing or on their social media accounts.
The team at North Brisbane Home Loans has had hundreds of satisfied clients and is considered the best-rated home loan mortgage brokers in Brisbane. We have a dedicated team of mortgage specialists who constantly receive great feedback from home buyers just like you. Have a look at just some of our reviews that we have received from our recent home buyers around Brisbane.
Should I use a mortgage broker?
Dipping your toes in the property market is a tricky task. And even though you’ve done your homework, you might be wondering whether you should hire a mortgage broker.
You don’t want to pay too much for a mortgage, and you also don’t want to miss out on opportunities to save money. That’s why it makes sense to use a professional to guide you through the entire process.
At North Brisbane Home Loans, not only do we provide you with the best advice on your home loan needs: we also introduce clients to our network of trusted partners offering discounted rates.
Finding a mortgage broker? Look no further than North Brisbane Home Loans
If you’re thinking of typing “how to find a mortgage broker” or “best mortgage broker near me” next in your Google search bar, then let us save you time and energy by telling you you have come to the right place!
Here at North Brisbane Home Loans, we have a team consisting of only the best mortgage brokers in Brisbane to help you get a perfect home loan with low rates and awesome features so you can:
- Buy your first home
- Upgrade to a new home
- Refinance your Home or Investment Loan
Contact us today for the right finance advice to ensure you are set to start making real estate offers on your dream home. We will work hand in hand with you, every step of the way.