Who doesn't want more choices?
To my surprise, not many people tap enough on the expertise of a mortgage broker. A mortgage broker typically represents many financial institutions. As they are not “tied” to any particular bank, they would be in a better position to provide a non-biased opinion on which bank(s) are offering the lowest interest/ most flexible mortgage package/ most suitable package that meets a borrower’s needs at that particular point in time. Banks take turns to offer different packages hence as a lay person, it would be difficult to know which is the best suitable package for oneself. Most people don’t have time to call more than 3 banks and more often than not, just make decisions on word of mouth, hearsay, branding, past experience, stereotypes.
This may not be such a wise move, especially given that a mortgage loan stretches over a long period of time.
Let me share with you a recent example.
A buyer was looking to upgrade to another residential property. Due to her age (more than 45 years old), there is a maximum cap on the allowable loan tenure under the current loan framework. Though her reported income was not high, she had cash and stock holdings. The mortgage broker whom I recommended to the buyer, worked with the buyer to work out solutions (to increase loan quantum, increase loan tenure etc) and patiently answered her seemingly "basic" questions. To work with a patient service provider is very important, because frankly, how many times does a typical homeowner take up a loan package in a lifetime? Hence these seemingly "basic" questions are not basic to a lay person. Yet these are vital and important concerns to be tackled.
Towards the end of the purchasing decision, the mortgage broker recommended suitable loan packages (At that time, floating rates were as low as 1% to fixed rates of 1.4% for 5 years).
In summary, it was a pleasant journey over 2 months when buyer finally settled on her most suitable property. This could not have been achieved if the financial planning part was not adequately resolved by a dedicated, patient, experienced mortgage broker