Today, we are excited to announce the launch of a new blog called Mortgages Unzipped. The goal is to deliver relevant and timely news and information to consumers who are interested in learning about home loans. Yes, we know there blogs out there by mortgage professionals who do a great job discussing industry topics, but there seems to be a shortage of blogs that examine mortgage events in an easy-to-understand manner. At Zillow, our aim is to help people become smarter about real estate, by providing lots of free information from lots of sources. We’re merely extending that goal into the mortgage space.
What’s the best way for consumers to learn about mortgages and the industry? From mortgage professionals themselves. So, we invited several top mortgage bloggers and professionals to be guest contributors on this blog to write for the consumer and help decode the complex world of mortgages. Zillow’s blog team will administer the Mortgages Unzipped blog, recruit its authors, and may contribute a post from time to time, but the resident experts are the faces you see in the right-hand sidebar.
Our contributors were selected for their deep understanding of the mortgage industry and how changes impact the consumer. Yes, they are mortgage professionals, but they aren’t here to hard-sell you on their services. Instead, they want to educate people making smarter mortgage decisions, and have offered to share their valuable experience and insight with us, one blog post at a time.
We plan on adding more contributors in the future, so if you’re interested in being a blogger for Mortgages Unzipped, please contact us.
In the meantime, please get to know the inaugural Mortgages Unzipped contributors!
Brian is a 14-year veteran of the mortgage industry and currently works as a loan originator at World Wide Credit Corporation in San Diego, California. Brian writes his own blog, America’s #1 Mortgage Broker, and he also frequently contributes to Bloodhound Blog. Brian lives in Del Mar, CA and enjoys coastal living with his wife and daughter.
Todd is a 16-year veteran of the mortgage industry, and an advocate of transparent “mortgage 2.0” platforms. Todd launched the first industry mortgage blog, Lenderama, which promotes career development, product reviews and industry news to help mortgage professionals work more effectively. Todd is also the founder of Bizomi Consulting, and helps real estate and mortgage professionals harness web 2.0 tools to enrich and streamline their businesses.
Rob Cochems is a 10-year veteran of the mortgage industry and is part owner of C&M Mortgage Lending. He specializes in portfolio lending, offering niche products that the current GSE’s are unable to offer. Previously, Rob was the operations manager for Bann-Cor Mortgage, handling sales and a $20 million credit line. He is new to blogging, but is looking forward to the opportunity. Rob lives in south Orange County, and enjoys all the aspects that Orange County has to offer, from lobster diving to snowboarding. He also enjoys cooking and wine.
Joe is senior vice president and co-founder of GO Financial Solutions in Seattle. He has 18 years of experience in the mortgage banking business and is a regular speaker at mortgage technology conferences. Joe is on the advisory board of Credex and Triple Point Water and serves as a mortgage consultant to Zillow. He also writes frequently on Joe’s Mortgage Blog. Joe loves live music, great wine and a beautiful family.
Andy is the founder and chief education officer of VideoCreditScore.com, a website offering free video-based credit score lessons and product reviews to consumers and real estate professionals. Previously, Andy was the general manager and vice president for myFICO.com, the consumer division of Fair Isaac Corp. Andy lives in San Francisco with his wife Molly and their dog Rocco. He loves Twitter, Facebook, traveling around the world, and cooking.
Matt is an independent mortgage technology consultant, with more than ten years experience in internet-based technologies and mortgage origination. His career has also included working for investment banks, and for companies that developed Internet-based technologies for the real estate industry. Matt is a proud Texan and spends his spare time riding dirt bikes and jet skis, playing golf, and spending time with his family.
Justin has spent roughly the last 10 years in the mortgage industry, and currently works for Assurity Financial Services. He created the Arizona Mortgage Team blog, and he also contributes to Phoenix Foreclosures and Real Phoenix Living.
Dan has 7 years experience as a loan officer and 5 years as a real estate agent, and he is also a former financial planner and a one-time air traffic controller. Dan currently operates two blogs, Searchlight Crusade and Dan Melson’s La Mesa Real Estate and Mortgage Website. Dan is a married father of two, is a science fiction fan and amateur historian, and has a broad, eclectic list of interests.
Jennifer has spent the last 6 years working in the real estate and mortgage industries, most recently as a loan advisor for Citizens Community Bank. She writes frequently on her blog, Don’t Read This Garbage, and is always up for an active debate on the Zillow Discussion Boards. Outside of work, Jennifer enjoys the political scene, traveling, good food, good books, and her two cats, Slick and Clementine. She is a native of Bridgewater, Connecticut.
Mike has more than 14 years of experience in the mortgage industry, and is currently a loan officer with Patagonia Finance. He writes a daily blog, Mike’s Minute and has been featured as a mortgage expert in a number of both print and broadcast outlets. Mike currently lives in Concord, CA with his family, and enjoys motorcycling, sport touring, hockey, fine wines, racing and Porsches.
Rhonda began her career in real estate in 1986 in the title and escrow industry, and is currently a top producer at Mortgage Master Service Corporation. She began blogging in late 2006 to help consumers learn more about their mortgage and the process of buying a home. In addition to her own blog, The Mortgage Porter, Rhonda also contributes to Rain City Guide. In her spare time, Rhonda likes to make dinner for her family and enjoys travel, gardening, reading, vintage autos, photography and wine.
A veteran of the mortgage and real estate industries, Mike has spent 11 years as a wholesale mortgage consultant and 25 years in real estate. He started and provides content for Mike’s Mortgage Report, a consumer-facing mortgage blog. Mike lives with his wife and six children in San Diego, CA. He enjoys rough water swimming, rowing, and spending time with his family.
Tom is a loan professional with more than 20 years of industry experience including tenure as a real estate agent and mortgage officer. He currently works for Fifth Third Bank in Grand Rapids, MI. He operates his own blog, Straight Talk About Mortgages and Real Estate, and he’s a contributor to Bloodhound Blog. He has 5 kids, is on the board of God’s Littlest Angels Orphanage, and enjoys golf, reading, coaching his son’s soccer team, swimming and camping.
Martin has over 20 years of residential lending experience in Central Florida. He is the President of American Mortgage Advisors and runs 720 Mortgage. Martin lives in Maitland, FL, is married with 2 children, and enjoys coaching his son’s Little League baseball team.