Every now and again we speak to people who are very much against paying fees to a Mortgage Broker. I have no issues with that, I suppose if we are getting paid commission and other brokers who also receive commission do not charge fees, why should we?
This post is not to convince you that you should pay fees, but hopefully just to give our side of it. The reason for the post is because I sat back this afternoon (it is a Friday) and realised I have spent the week sorting things out that go well above and beyond what is in the job description of a Mortgage broker. I do not mind doing it at all, but I do know that there are a lot of mortgage brokers who would not entertain doing it.
This week we have had 3 cases in particular:
Case 1 – Applicant is purchasing a flat. There has been some movement on the property but there has also been works carried out. The 2 solicitors are not liasing with one another and one week has gone in to the next and we are now 3 weeks in and stuck at the same point. The customer is losing patience as is the vendor. So we picked up the phone to the lender to query what exactly is needed and what would be acceptable if that is not available. We put a very frank email together copying in both lots of solicitors and the customers putting it in very plain terms what is needed and that we expect them to pick this up and move forward without delay – 24 hours, everything is back on track. This is the solicitors job, but for whatever reason they had reached an impasse and the purchase looked like it was close to falling through.
Case 2 – The customer had free legals on a Mortgage. Because the solicitors were not doing anything and certainly nothing quickly, we managed to get all of the paperwork the solicitors needed, we put it all in an email, labelled everything and the bits the customer did not have and had not been asked to get, we pre-empted and got them ordered. All in all we probably saved the customers a further 2 week delay.
Case 3 – Our customer was buying a house, the vendor had requested a redemption figure and all was set for a particular day. Completion did not take place and it was planned to take place on the monday, by this time the vendors redemption figure had expired. The solicitors on our side then had to send the money back and again, solicitors not being very communicative were causing problems. Again, we took it in hand and managed to get both sides talking and back on track.
We are very big in limiting the amount of work we take on at any one time. Whilst it is not common that problems will arise in the final stages, it certainly can do. It is not a case of “we are straight forward, we will be fine” or “we have bad credit, we need a broker” the reality is applicants with bad credit can have straight forward applications and straight forward applicants can have nightmare applications. It is actually no more common on bad credit applications than it is on normal applications that issues arise.
Mortgage Brokers are not a price comparison service. Anyone can find the cheapest deal. We are there to make sure you apply to the best lender for you, we are there to offer guidance and most importantly, we are there if or when things go wrong. It just so happens that this week, that has happened on 3 applications.
Would a fee free Mortgage Broker be able to offer the same service?
As mentioned previously, we limit the amount of work we take on and the reason we can do that is because we charge a fee. If we did not charge, we would need to take on more cases, that in turns means we are not around as much to fix problems. In all 3 cases above, it was not our job to fix those issues, but the customers did not always know where else to turn. Sometimes you just want someone to take control and fix the problem – which is what we did on all 3 cases.
We are not saying you should or should not pay for a broker. It is your hard earned money at the end of the day and it is your choice whether to choose a broker who charges mortgage broker fees or not. We are just explaining our take on it.
If we did not charge, we would only be able to offer a service of finding your mortgage and applying. We would not be available to offer additional help/support along the way, we would probably also take a little longer to get your applications under way, again because we wound need more applications on the go. It is the largest transaction of your life most likely, in the grand scheme of things, the fee is only a small additional cost – but I realise by saying that, we are trying to spend your money.
As with anything in life, more often than not there is still a cost in getting something for free. In terms of the three mortgage cases this week alone, had we not been involved as a fee charging mortgage broker, to sort out the respective messes, thats three people who didnt get to move home.
Our mortgage broker fees are proportional to the service we provide and as a result we go the extra mile to ensure all of our mortgage cases go through.