Buying real estate can be easy or more painful than a fork in the eye. I prefer the easy way.
This past 4th of July weekend, I wrote two offers for two different clients. They both purchased townhomes listed for about $750,000. Each buyer was a qualified and experienced buyer purchasing a second home.
My buyer from the Northeast chose an online lender. My buyer from the South chose a local lender. My buyer from the South had a very smooth purchasing experience, was approved over a week before the settlement deadline, and closed on time. My buyer from the Northeast had one of the worst purchase experiences I have ever been involved with. All of the stress was caused by her online lender.
The Challenges of Online Lenders
I cautioned my Northeast buyer not to use an online lender. She had just refinanced her primary residence with this same lender and felt confident based on that experience. She was dead wrong.
She was passed along to numerous people and none of them would return a phone call or email. Finally, she went back to the loan officer who she started with and that person took over 12 hours to respond. We had to extend her financing and closing deadlines three times.
Her plans to remodel the condo and travel to Park City were completely shattered twice. She almost lost the ability to consummate the purchase. If the sellers refused to extend the settlement deadline, she would have had no choice but to cancel the contract.
It is very painful for me to have a front row seat to a train wreck. Yet, there was nothing I could do to help. I can not make a lender return calls or process a loan faster. All I could do was beg for extensions and promise the listing agent my client was really going to close.
Preferred Local Lenders
Like many things in life, there is the seemingly convenient way to do things and there’s the way that takes a little more effort up front. Sometimes the easy way isn’t all that easy.
I liken this to getting bids on a remodel using an online form. You’re going to get much better response and service if you have a relationship (either face-to-face or via phone) with the construction professional.
With local home lenders, you’re going to get someone who knows your market at a hyper local level. That means they have a better comprehension of property values and the local economy. It also means they are connected in town and would never tarnish their reputation treating you like the online lender treated my client from the Northeast.
I have a list of local lenders from a variety of financial institutions that would never treat my clients the way this one was treated. If you are considering purchasing a property in Park City, I urge you to use one of our excellent local lenders.