{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Have one week for shopping mortgage for first house. Where do i start, any online sites , credit unions or mortgage agencies that are offering low rate loans. First time home buyer so no clue what to look for. Any tips to work with PMI, points , loan terms.", "post_id": "5f1b512296850a0021491d21", "reply_count": 9, "vote_count": 1, "bowl_id": "59064a3cb12379001006592c", "bowl_name": "Personal Investment Chatter" }

Have one week for shopping mortgage for first house. Where do i start, any online sites , credit unions or mortgage agencies that are offering low rate loans. First time home buyer so no clue what to look for. Any tips to work with PMI, points , loan terms.

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Rocket mortgage or better.com are good places to start. You will probably have better experience working with a local mortgage broker, who will be able to provide some hand holding with you being first time home buyer. Don't pay PMI. It truly is a black hole. Down payment in most cases have to be 20% to avoid PMI. Go with the lowest 30-year loan you can lock, without paying points. Talk to friends in the same city to gauge which mortgage brokers you want to meet. Talk to at least 2. Pay extra towards your mortgage principal each month, agent you close. In a 30-year amortization schedule very little of your monthly payment goes towards principal. Get all documents ready. Salary slips, back statements, past year returns. If spouse works, 2x.

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This is all great advice. I would only add that it is worth looking at 10/1 and 7/1 ARM products. You’ll get slightly better rates, and you likely won’t be in your first home forever (particularly if you think you might have kids).

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These are gr8 pts. Thanks folks.

Lending Tree is another good company and will hook you up with a number of brokers. You don’t need a local broker as long as your RE agent is local.

Also, you can prequalify quickly. I was prequalified in 30 minutes.

Get "pre-approved". That's a step above "pre-qualified" with more thorough process. Helps if you are competing against other buyers.

Agree with putting down 20% if you can to avoid PMI, but if your loan is on the smaller side, PMI won’t be a huge cost. So if you can only swing 15% down, for example, I don’t think that’s a deal breaker if the PMI isn’t like $200 a month. Don’t pay points, which is basically paying your interest up front. Not worth it. Also, why only one week for a mortgage? Did you already find a house?

Find a local mortgage company that is patient and answers your questions. Ideally you’re dealing with an individual and not a call center. Use Yelp to find highly rated mortgage companies in your area. Talk to two or three and judge them not just on rates but on ability to answer your questions competently and in a timely manner.

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