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Know Your Mortgage Fees, and You'll Never Pay Too Much for Your Loan
If you buy new windows, you'll not only pay for the windows, you will also pay an installation fee. When you purchase a car, you pay tax, title, assumption fee, etc. Just about every major purchase comes with extra costs or fees, and home loans are no different. Most people think they don't have to pay costs on a loan, because they are paying interest on the loan (they figure this is their fee - a premium on the money). A mortgage, however, does not come free.
While some are mandatory, others are not. Follow these guidelines, and you'll never pay too much for your purchase mortgage or refinance loan. The origination fee -- The fee that bothers people the most is the origination fee, or what some mortgage people call a broker fee. This is often confused with points, but should not be. Points are something completely different. The origination or broker fee is what you pay the loan officer to originate or create and complete your home loan, whether it's a purchase or a refinance. All mortgage people charge them, whether they work for a mortgage brokerage or for a bank.
Remember, if you're told there is not a broker or origination fee, chances are you're paying a higher interest rate, and this is how they're making this fee. The origination fee is the primary way mortgage brokers make money. The company gets the entire fee, and your broker or loan officer gets a percentage of that fee - somewhere between 30 and 65 percent.
So, if your mortgage broker charges you two percent on a $100,000 loan, this is $2,000 for his company or bank and up to $1,300 for him. You may think this is an outrageous amount of money, especially considering that this is just one of the costs you have to pay, in order to complete you loan. It might be, and then again, it might not. It depends on what type of loan you get, how much work is involved in closing it, and the quality of the service you get. Here are a few guidelines on what you should be willing to pay in origination or broker fees.
Bad credit's effect -- If you are a sub prime borrower, or someone with credit problems, expect to pay more - up to $3,000 or $4,000. Remember, sub prime, or non-conforming, borrowers have some type of baggage that makes them difficult to get approved, which is a huge part of the mortgage professional's job. They may, for example, have a recent bankruptcy or foreclosure on their record, or a civil or criminal judgement, tax liens on the property, or very little equity in their home. These are problems that good mortgage professionals can get around, but it takes a lot of time and effort.
I once helped an elderly gentleman on a fixed income refinance his home, and he had 14 liens against his home, all of which had to be satisfied, before his mortgage could be paid off, and he could get a new loan. I had three weeks, and probably 25 hours of time, just clearing these liens. One of them was a defaulted car loan on a car he didn't even have. He owed $3,000, hadn't made a payment in three years, and the bank was still after him. I had to negotiate with the collection agent from that bank, and get them to take $1,800 to satisfy the loan, which I would work into his new mortgage. After many telephone conversations and some very hard selling, they agreed, and I wound up getting it done.
Now, I would have normally charged a minimum of $2,500 (over five percent of the loan amount, in this case) for this type of work, but there was not enough equity in the house to get that much origination in the loan. I actually did it for less than $1,000 ($500 of which was mine), just because I wanted to help this man, who needed the cash he was going to get from the new loan to put a new roof on his dilapidated house. This is just one example of when it's acceptable to pay more in origination fee, even though this man didn't have to do so.
Conversely, let's assume you're refinancing your home in a perfect scenario. You have perfect credit, lots of equity in your home, plenty of cash reserves, and the paperwork is very easy. The loan officer says he can complete your loan in two weeks, most of which will be consumed by the work of other people, such as title agents and an appraiser. This origination should not be much more than one percent of the loan amount and even smaller, if the loan amount is over $150,000. This is a loan that mortgage people refer to as "A Paper." It is very easy to close, and takes very little work, so the loan officer can make his money on volume, by doing lots of these types of loans. I always charged $1,500 or less for an A Paper loan.
So, begin learning your closing costs by finding out what the origination fee is (remember, most of the time it's negotiable). One to two percent of the loan amount is acceptable, unless extraordinary circumstances exist.
Mark Barnes is the author of the new novel, The League, the first work of fiction, based on fantasy football. He is also an investment real estate and home loan finance expert. Learn more about his suspense thriller at http://www.sportsnovels.com Get his free mortgage finance course at http://www.winningthemortgagegame.com
MORE RESOURCES updated Sat. May / 27 / 2023
The 1 Situation Where It Could Easily Pay to Refinance Right Now The Motley Fool
The Great Pandemic Mortgage Refinance Boom - Liberty Street Economics Liberty Street Economics -
Why Older People Can’t Get New Mortgages The New York Times
Today's Mortgage, Refinance Rates: May 26, 2023 | Tired of Rising Rates? Blame the Debt Ceiling Debacle - Business Insider
Today's Mortgage, Refinance Rates: May 26, 2023 | Tired of Rising Rates? Blame the Debt Ceiling Debacle Business Insider
Compare Today’s Refinance Rates | U.S. U.S News & World Report Money
What is mortgage refinancing and how does it work? Yahoo Finance
Today's Mortgage, Refinance Rates: May 21, 2023 | Rates are Flat for now, but Should Drop Later This Year - Business Insider
Today's Mortgage, Refinance Rates: May 21, 2023 | Rates are Flat for now, but Should Drop Later This Year Business Insider
How to get a low-cost mortgage refinance Yahoo Finance
Should you refinance your mortgage to pay off debt? New York Post
Banks to be stuck with 'mortgage prisoners' as those who can refinance their home loan search for a better interest rate - ABC News
Banks to be stuck with 'mortgage prisoners' as those who can refinance their home loan search for a better interest rate ABC News
Home equity loan or HELOC vs cash-out mortgage refinance Yahoo Finance
What Credit Score Is Needed To Refinance a House | Chase Chase News & Stories
Total Household Debt Reaches $17.05 trillion in Q1 2023; Mortgage ... - Federal Reserve Bank of New York
Total Household Debt Reaches $17.05 trillion in Q1 2023; Mortgage ... Federal Reserve Bank of New York
Ask Chuck: How can I ever afford a home? The Christian Post
Struggling mortgage holders furiously refinance MacroBusiness
Refinancing your mortgage could save you thousands — here are some of the best refinance lenders - CNBC
Refinancing your mortgage could save you thousands — here are some of the best refinance lenders CNBC
How To Remove PMI: A Complete Guide Zing! Blog by Quicken Loans
Compare Current VA Loan Rates | U.S. U.S News & World Report Money
How does mortgage refinancing work? CBS News
Should I Refinance My Mortgage? - Buy Side from WSJ The Wall Street Journal
Here’s how sharply mortgage refinancing has dropped off Yahoo Finance
CFPB Launches Effort to Spur New Opportunities for Homeowners ... - Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
CFPB Launches Effort to Spur New Opportunities for Homeowners ... Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
Today’s 30-year mortgage refinance rates hit lowest levels in 15 days | Oct. 28, 2022 - Fox Business
Analysis | It Will Pay to Wait to Refinance Your UK Mortgage The Washington Post
Small Business Loan Refinance Bankrate.com
Debt-Ceiling Deal Is Close. Recession And Stock-Market Drop May ... Investor's Business Daily
VA Refinance Rates - Current VA Loan Refinance Rates Today Business Insider
Current 15-Year Refinance Rates Today Business Insider
Refinance Closing: An Overview Zing! Blog by Quicken Loans
7 Refinancing Programs for Seniors Total Mortgage