Profile picture for roadant

Looking for a mortgage broker recommendation.

I'm looking to purchase a home in southern California and I need to find a good mortgage broker. Does anyone have experience with a straight shooter? Specifically, I'm looking for a broker that is skilled and willing to provide a (standardized) Good Faith Estimate.

I've been looking around but have found that many brokers either don't want to provide it, want to provide their own non-standard versions of it, or they provide one but it's not filled out completely or it doesn't pencil out with numbers that jive.

I want to narrow my search down to working with a couple competent brokers and then pick the best loan terms from there, that way I'm not trying to work with six different brokers to get the same thing done.

Any recommendations for good brokers in SoCal?

  • August 12 2011 - US
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Answers (11)

You won't get a GFE until you have submitted an application and have a property in contract. If your criteria for getting a broker is getting a GFE, you are going to be spinning your wheels.

That being said, there are many good brokers in SoCal, if one of them gives you a GFE before you have a property in contract I would exclude them from the list as that would be a very silly thing to do.
  • August 12 2011
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Profile picture for daveskow
Always a good idea to ask for referals for this from friends / agent/ coworkers ..this way you will be possibly working with a " proven commodity " that will be sure to want to do a good job for you so as to not make the referal source  upset as well
  • August 12 2011
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A good resource for mortgage broker recommendations is your real estate agent. Your offer on a property will be stronger if you're working with a mortgage broker who's known by the listing agent, and has been found to be reliable in getting the loans to close. Your agent should know the local players well enough to guide you to some of the recognized local pros. Of course, this doesn't mean you can't get a GFE from one or two other lenders, just so you can be sure you're getting the best loan rates.
  • August 12 2011
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Profile picture for shapiroamg
You willnot get a GFE until you apply but you can get a Cost Worksheet to see what your costs will look like. Suprisingly most lenders and brokers Cost Worksheets look like the old GFE.
  • August 12 2011
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Profile picture for roadant

I should clarify… I understand a GFE without the completed application would only be an estimate.

I'm looking for the non-binding GFE as a way to select which brokers I will work with. I'm close to settling on a place but once I'm in a contract I don't want the hassle of trying to find a good/competent broker then going through the application process with six of them while my clock is ticking.

I want to narrow the field prior to entering the contract. My goal is to work with two and only two brokers… That way I'm not wasting my time or theirs.

Will no one provide a estimate-only GFE?

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As Shap states, you will get a "fee worksheet" which specifically states it's NOT a GFE. You won't get a GFE or anything that says GFE because that's illegal. The fee worksheet from most lenders will be accurate and easier to understand than the GFE anyway as it will detail all fees and what they are for. This is something the actual GFE does not do. The standardized GFE that went into effect January 1, 2010 is a legally binding document that you simply are not going to get until all the information needed is present. That information includes a property address and preferably one in contract.
  • August 12 2011
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"I want to narrow the field prior to entering the contract. My goal is to work with two and only two brokers… That way I'm not wasting my time or theirs."

PS, Try narrowing it to 1. Working with 2 while in contract is wasting someones time. 
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Profile picture for John Fagan
Here is a straight-shooter who started off as just my neighbor, and now our families are very close...well, as close as we can be since my family relocated to northern California.  I still refer my northern California clients to him and have used him myself.
Ken Moorhead
Silverado Capital
[edited by Zillow moderator to remove phone number.  Please refer to Good Neighbor Policy]
  • August 12 2011
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An "estimate only" GFE sort of defeats the purpose if it is non-binding. That would mean that he broker could put together a GFE promising any sort of costs/rates and then not honor those estimates with impunity. 

For this reason, I suggest you work with someone who comes highly recommended and CHECK THEIR REFERENCES. If you would like a reference to someone I highly recommend (I'm not in the mortgage business) - shoot me an email/message. (I'm in the San Diego area)

Best of luck!
  • August 12 2011
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These two Loan Brokers come highly recommended...Out of the box thinkers and very hard workers.  Give them a shot you won't be let down.
[promotional link removed by Zillow moderator]

  • August 12 2011
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Roadant

With all of the new Federal regulations and laws, many lenders now try to shy away from issuing good faiths until you have a property.

Once the six items that trigger disclosure are met, we are mandated to issue disclosures.

With all due respect, if I went the full route that I once did with all of the people that I talk to daily, all I would be doing is mailing, faxing, or emailing disclosures.

Find two or three good brokers in CA to discuss your needs.

Best of Luck.
  • August 13 2011
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