Unless you are a property investor or serial home flipper, you’re unlikely to take out many home loans in your lifetime. When you do, it will be a new adventure. Notice I said adventure and not nightmare. You won’t be doing this alone. You’ll have a loan team dedicated to making your loan experience a success. Let’s meet your home loan team and the players helping you on your exciting journey home!
Surprised? You shouldn’t be. You are at the center of the transaction and your full participation is key to the smooth progress of your loan. Once you decide to take out a home loan, there’s work to do! The requests for information and documentation may feel overwhelming, especially at the beginning. Trust your team. Everyone is working with tight deadlines, and it’s all in your best interest. If you are wondering why someone wants a certain document, or why you have to complete a task by a particular date, talk to your mortgage loan originator.
Mortgage Loan Originator.
Whether your loan is for a purchase, refinance or renovation, you’ll work with a mortgage loan originator (sometimes called a loan officer). This person has a license to originate a loan, which covers everything from your application to your closing. Your originator is the team leader, the person who will advise you about your loan options, and the one with overall responsibility for your loan. Regular communication is an important part of the job, and when you have a question or concern, your loan originator is there to respond to you in a timely manner.
Some loan originators have an assistant or coordinator to help with the initial document and information collection for your loan, and with periodic updates as your loan moves forward. This person may be your main point of contact on a day-to-day basis.
Meet your new best friend. First, the processor makes sure that the initial loan submission (application, documents, and verifications) is complete. Then, throughout the entire loan transaction, they let everyone know what documents and information are needed, and ensure that everything is collected and submitted quickly to underwriting. Processors are knowledgeable professionals who know the entire loan process (thus the job title). When your processor calls or emails, be sure to respond as soon as possible.
Ah, perhaps the most mysterious person on the team. The underwriter determines if you are creditworthy, that is, if you are going to get your loan. This is not an arbitrary process. Underwriters have to understand and apply the rules governing home loans, and those rules vary according to type of loan. The underwriter verifies your income, assets, debts and any other property you own. If your loan is approved, it will usually be a conditional approval, which means your processor may be asking you for additional information. Once the conditions are satisfied, the underwriter will issue a final approval.
Closer and Funder.
In the last few days of your loan, there are people in two critical departments who will make sure that your loan ends successfully. The closer makes sure the lender documents are correct and arrive in time for the closing. Tight deadlines can make this challenging, and closers are often the unsung heroes of the loan. The funder moves the lender’s money (your loan) to the escrow company after you close. Without the money, your loan is not complete.
Yes, it begins and ends with you. Congratulations on doing your part to make your loan a success!
Note: This is a simplified overview only. Your loan team and process may differ.