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Posted: 3/14/2006 5:36:35 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/14/2006 5:43:54 AM EDT by EagleArmsHBAR]
Hey everyone, I am finally going to buy my first house. My fiancee and I got into contract on it last night and we are very excited. We plan on doing an 80/20 to avoid PMI and are leaning towards USAA as our lender. Anyone have any opinions on who to use?

ETA: Anyone ever heard of Benchmark Mortgage?
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 5:37:44 AM EDT
I'll tell you who not to use -----> Ameriquest
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 5:41:05 AM EDT
Shop around. The vast majority of mortgages are sold on the open market within a few months of closing, anyway. Don't think you will get any long-term service.
I had a mortgage broker who offered me a slightly better rate, but the guy seemed flaky to me, so I didn't go with him. He could not consistently add up a coloum of numbers and get the same total once!
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 5:51:24 AM EDT
We've dealt with Washington Mutual on about 4 house loans and they've been decent. However, I'm inclined to say your results are more dependant on the expertise of the person you deal with rather than the company. YMMV. BTW, I've heard some horror stories about WA Mutual as well.

It reminds me of buying a PC in that regardless of which brand you choose, somebody is going to pop-up and tell you some horror story about whatever your choice is.

One thing does seem consistent though: The "front" companies that initiate a loan and then simply sell it off are not as desirable. While I think just about all mortgage companies can do this, some tend to do it more than others. You might ask prospective lenders about this. We've never had a loan sold-off by WA Mutual...at least that we know of.

You might also check-out how well equipped the mortgage company is in terms of online presence. You may find it useful to occasionally check your loan balance or nab tax docs via a website or see if your last payment was received, etc.

You are smart to avoid that ripoff mortgage insurance, IMO. Of course, remember to save all your paperwork as "points" you pay for the loan are probably going to be tax deductions for you. You may also wish to pay your property taxes yourself. Since your putting 20% down, your mort. company should have no problem with that. You might as well be getting interest on that money.
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 5:52:52 AM EDT
Go with a credit union. Distinct advantages and they can't rip you for a number of fees that a bank and mortgage broker can. They'll sell your loan to a bank right after.
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 2:14:40 PM EDT
BTT
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 2:25:59 PM EDT
Pentagon Federal Credit Union. On line.
The rep just left our house, we signed the papers on a re-finance.
A #1 outfit.
My supervisor turned me on to them. He's a tight ass and has used them for years, on several houses, all autos, ect.
We really couldn't be happier.
To join you have to be a member of one of a bunch of military affiliated organizations. If you are not (we weren't) you can pay 20 bucks for the cheapest one while signing up.
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 2:39:11 PM EDT
I keep seeing and add in the upper right hand corner of the header....
Jorge Avilla, ring a bell? And NO, I am NOT affiliated. Just thought you might want
to investigate, and give it consideration.
Link Posted: 3/14/2006 2:41:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By xinflt:
I'll tell you who not to use -----> Ameriquest


Hell yes - and I'm a broker.
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