Notes from an interview with Mike Bowman, President
I can’t turn on a radio, TV, or computer these days without seeing an ad for a big national mortgage company. Why should I consider a local company like Interface instead?
The reason you want to call me is the expertise. You can hear a lot of ads and do a ton of research, and think you fit in a particular program, contact a company and tell them what you are interested in, and they will do everything possible to fit you into that program. You may spend weeks of effort without the desired result simply because there was not enough information on the table to verify that you had made the right selection.
I see your website has an online application, just like the Internet lenders. Is that the best place to start?
Although our website provides a way to submit a loan application, this isn’t automatically the best first step. I like to conduct a brief but very targeted interview, asking questions that will help you find the best program, based on age, income, demographics, your place in life... all those things.
You can't get that on the internet. Somebody advertises a certain program and you decide you want to do that, they are going to try to fit you into that program. I give you 25 years worth of expertise. For example if you are a first time homebuyer, I know all the down payment assisted programs; I know what you might fit. Just by chatting with you, I can fit you into the best program. I may be able to get you in with no money down, or a very small down payment. Or I'll get you the better rate. There are 25 down payment assisted programs in Albuquerque. No computer program is going to pick those up, and you can't apply with a generic application and make it fit.
You want to have a conversation with your mortgage banker. It's the most important conversation of your financial life. It's the biggest purchase. Look through our website; learn all you can about us and mortgages in general. But on something this big and this important, you want to sit down and look at somebody face to face and not only get a good feeling for them... you’ll know that you've got the best financial fit humanly possible.
Do you also do this type of fact-gathering for refinancing?
Even more so with a re-fi; there is even more information that contributes to the best selection. A lot of times, people will go ahead and just apply, and they miss important benefits because all their objectives weren’t expressed in terms that fit underwriting guidelines... there are all types of little nuances that a generic application just doesn't pick up.
One of the things that makes people reluctant to go through the mortgage process is all the stories about last minute surprises. Everybody knows someone who went to a closing appointment and expected to be able to start moving in, and something came up at the very last minute. Does your company have a way of guaranteeing that there won’t be any last minute surprises?
Yes, we do! It's called TRID: “Truth in Lending, RESPA, Integrated Disclosure”
It means that all the ducks are in a row – everything is perfect. Then, as a mortgage company, we issue the “CD”, Closing Disclosure. It is a six page document showing your rate, payments, cash to close – everything you need to know about your loan. You must acknowledge receiving it and then we have to wait three days to before you can close, and NOTHING CAN CHANGE. “Know before you owe.” Pretty cool.