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Frequently Asked Questions

Why Should I Use a Mortgage Broker?

Mortgage brokers are licensed and regulated financial professionals that act as a bridge between borrowers and lenders. They originate loans and work with a variety of lenders who have mortgage products that best fit your financial situation.


The best way to distinguish a mortgage broker from a bank is that often a bank will offer only products from their bank, but brokers bring a variety of lenders options to the table. 


An important benefit of working with a mortgage broker is that they do the shopping around for you. By working with a variety of lenders, you have access to competitive mortgage rates and terms that could best fit your current needs. Let’s talk.  


What If I Have Bad Credit?

We will work with you in securing a mortgage loan option even if you have negative information on your credit report. Learn more.


How Long Does It Take to Get Pre-qualified?

Depending on the situation, it could take a minutes to hours or a few days depending on the financial complexity of an applicant. Learn more.


Do I Need To Get Mortgage Pre-qualification Before I Shop for a House?

In our experience, real-estate agents like to have a mortgage pre-qualification letter in-hand. Knowing what monthly payment you are comfortable with and qualify for helps you determine your purchase price range and helps your real-estate agent identify the right properties for you. Learn more.


How Much of a Down Payment Do I Need?

You could pay as little as 3% down depending on your creditworthiness. Learn more.


My Situation Is Complicated, Can You Help?

Client’s finances can be complicated at times depending on what they do for a living and their current place in life. We try to provide different financing options for different situations. We do our best to help you secure a mortgage loan that works with your current circumstances. Learn more.  


Do You Finance Second Homes?

Yes. We provide 2nd home financing in Pennsylvania up to 90% LTV (loan to value). Learn more.


Is Buying a Good Investment or Should I Just Keep Renting?

We have a rent vs buy calculator on our website. Try it for free.

What Is Private Mortgage Insurance?

Private mortgage insurance, also called PMI, is a type of insurance that protects the lender if you stop making payments on your mortgage. If your down payment for a conventional mortgage is less than 20%, a lender will require you to obtain PMI.  Learn more.

What Is an Escrow account?

If you are to put 20% down, you have the option to escrow your property taxes and homeowners insurance in your monthly payment or pay the property taxes and homeowners insurance on your own, if you put less than 20% down the lender will require you have an escrow account. The escrow account allows for you to stretch your homeowner’s insurance yearly premium and yearly property taxes into 12 monthly payments every year, your total monthly payment will include your principle and interest payment, homeowners and property taxes.


What Is Equity?

Your home equity is the difference between what your home appraises for and the principal amount of your mortgage that you owe at the time. In a typical home purchase,  If you buy a house for $300,000 and put down 20%, then your equity in your home is $60,000.  


The value of your home could go up or down for a various reason. If the value goes down, you have less equity. If it goes up, you have more equity.  Learn more.


What Is a Down Payment?

This is the initial payment a homebuyer pays when using a mortgage loan to purchase a house. In the example above, 20% is the down payment.  Learn more.


What Is an Appraisal?

A home appraisal is an unbiased estimate of your home’s value. After you have signed your loan application and intend to proceed, your mortgage lender will order an appraisal of the home you plan to buy.


A completed appraisal is important because it ensures the appraised value matches the sales price which confirms you’re not overbuying.  Learn more.


What Is an Underwriter?

Underwriters work for mortgage lenders. They are responsible for assessing the risk of lending money to you.  The term "underwriting" refers to the process that leads to final loan approval or denial.


To reach a decision, underwriters consider various factors, such as your credit report, your credit score, the loan-to-value ratio, the debt-to-income ratio, and other factors.  Learn more.


What Is a Title Agent?

A title agent searches county records to determine legal ownership of the property. They also find mortgages, liens or unpaid taxes that have to be settled before a property can be sold. They also look for leases, easements, and legal restrictions.  Title insurance protects the lender and/or owner against lawsuits or claims against the property that result from disputes over the title. Learn more.



What Is a Debt-to-Income Ratio?

Your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio is the percentage of your income that goes toward paying your monthly debts.  You can calculate your debt-to-income ratio by dividing your monthly debt obligations by your pretax, or gross adjusted income. Try our debt-to-income calculator here.


What Is a Loan-to-Value Ratio?

The loan-to-value (LTV) ratio describes the proposed amount of your mortgage loan compared to the appraised value of the property that secures the loan.  Simply put, this is a number that shows a lender how much equity you have in a property compared to the mortgage you currently owe or will owe.  A high LTV can signal more risk for a lender depending on the mortgage product.  Try our loan-to-value calculator here.

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