A Sacramento Mortgage Lender Can Make or Break the Escrow

Real_Estate_Agents_300x262The thing about primarily representing sellers in a transaction is a listing agent rarely gets the opportunity to recommend an excellent Sacramento mortgage lender to a buyer. This is normally handled by the buyer’s agent. That doesn’t stop lenders and their lender reps — the mortgage loan officers (MLOs) — from nonstop spamming / harassing and marketing to listing agents in hopes of attracting their business, but quite frankly they are barking up the wrong tree and going about it in the wrong way.

No veteran real estate agent is likely to recommend a mortgage loan officer due to a brief office meeting or over leisurely coffee breaks (what are those) at Starbucks. Agents recommend loan officers who have proven themselves worthy of a recommendation through performance. We put them on our list. They can’t ask to be added to our list because we won’t add them.

Sometimes I run into a situation with a buyer that is perhaps a bit iffy, which is a good way to describe some of the risky situations I spot. If I don’t recognize the mortgage loan officer in those instances, the sellers and I might suggest that the buyer get a second opinion from one of my preferred lenders. They are preferred because I know and trust them to thoroughly investigate and analyze a situation before issuing a pre-approval letter. They discuss options and make sure the borrower understands the mortgage choices at hand.

When a mortgage loan officer informs the agent, say, a week or so before closing, that the buyer can’t remove the appraisal contingency when an appraisal has been completed, a Sacramento real estate agent might rightly wonder why. Perhaps the mortgage loan officer will say something like the borrower was upset over all of the costs to get an FHA loan and decided to switch to conventional.

You know what that tells me? It tells me that the mortgage loan officer did not thoroughly explain the GFE to the borrower upon inception of the loan. It also tells me that the mortgage loan officer herself probably suggested the conventional loan as an alternative, not realizing that the buyer’s contract did not specify a conventional loan. The sellers will most likely consider this to be a contractual change, whether the MLO realizes it.

When presented with reality, the MLO might argue and say the conventional loan is better for the seller. Really? It might be for the buyer, but it’s not necessarily better for the seller. What if the seller had a former buyer in escrow who had an FHA appraisal previously completed, and what if that was the reason the sellers chose the present FHA buyer? No appraisal problems. Now that the buyer is changing financing, it changes the type of appraisal, and it could affect the entire transaction. Moreover, why would a mortgage loan officer who is hoping for repeat business leave the buyer’s agent out of the loop and overstep?

Perhaps the most endearing quality would be if the MLO desperately tried to justify the new financing by explaining to the listing agent how conventional financing works in comparison to FHA — especially to an agent who has been selling real estate before the MLO was born. Some mortgage lender reps set their own paths for failure, and they don’t need any help from anybody else.

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