Most lenders have one goal. Close your loan. How they get there, and how they do their job, varies from Loan Originator to Loan Originator, but in the end, and here’s the brutal truth, they will do anything to close your loan. If your loan doesn’t close… they don’t get paid.
Now, some lenders make an hourly wage but most of those are draws against commission. Meaning they get paid an hourly wage but, essentially, have to pay it back when they close a loan. There is nothing more demoralizing as a lender than to have a nice closing and all of the commission go towards paying off your draws. And they will do anything, and say anything, to make sure that doesn’t happen.
The other piece most people don’t know is that in most lending organizations the Loan Originators are salespeople. They are paid like salespeople. They are (dis)respected like salespeople and they act like salespeople. If you have ever purchased a used car then you’ve met the cloth most Loan Originators are cut from.
Of course, no mortgage company would exist without their ‘sales’ staff. The money that is brought in to lenders on these mortgages is the fuel that runs the entire organization. The Loan Originators know this and often act like they walk on water. (Note… they don’t)
If a lender has a chance to steal someone else’s deal, from another company, of course, they will do everything they can. Up to and including making outrageous and morally flexible claims.
As an honest and transparent lender, I always estimate fees high. I find it always best to set the expectations for the worst-case scenario and have the costs of the fees come in lower. Morally flexible lenders trying to steal a deal will tell you that they have no fees, they do, that there are no closing costs, there always are and that their rates can’t be beaten, they can. If you are shopping between lenders, which I totally encourage, and one lender sends you a Loan Estimate with actual fees and rates that are expected and the lender you are shopping with is unwilling to do so, they are not being honest. If you are the type of person who shares information from an honest and transparent person with someone trying to steal a deal, and you don’t give the original person a chance to meet what is being proposed, then the moral flexibility is on you.
I work very hard on behalf of my clients. I can compete, I always do and I always win. I always win on honesty and transparency and I always win on going the extra mile and working hard on your behalf. When there is a tangible and authentic loan estimate that I cannot compete with or is a great deal, I let them know. I know what I can do and I know what I am willing to do.
I recently lost a deal to a client I had been working with for over eight months. I spent countless hours on the phone with them, talking to listing agents and sellers on their behalf and being available virtually every day at virtually every hour. Once they went under contract I did my required duties and sent them a proper Loan Estimate. They promptly sent that to another lender and never gave me the opportunity to meet or review the other lender’s loan estimate. They never gave me the courtesy of a phone call informing me that they went with another lender. They used their moral flexibility. They used my services and time and efforts for the better part of the year to get them their dream home and when the rubber met the road they weren’t willing to give me five minutes.
I, of course, wish them the best of luck but in the end, treating people who have invested so much on your behalf as a commodity is an insult.
Those lenders who actively employ Loan Officers who act differently are not the ones you want to do business with. Find a partner who you can trust. Find a partner who is willing to invest their time and best efforts in you and your financial future. Find a partner who is honest and transparent. And if you do shop in the end, give them the opportunity to see what they are up against and let them see what they can do to match or beat rates, fees, etc…
Otherwise, you might be the reason why that honest and transparent relationship-based lender becomes a salesperson in the end. Regardless, I remain unswayed. Mine is the best way to be a Loan Originator. That of being a mentor, being available, and being honest and transparent.