Should You Get a Loan Through Your Bank?

Emily Terpak March 30, 2023

When you’re looking to buy a home, one of the first things you’ll want to do is get pre-approved. Your first instinct might be to reach out to your bank since they already hold a lot of your money and they know all of your information etc. But they might not be your best option and here is why. 
Traditional banks like Wells Fargo, PNC, Bank of America, Citizens, TD Bank, and Credit Unions can all help you get a mortgage, but they’re not going to be available on the weekends when you might need them the most. As a real estate agent, 70% of my showings are done on the weekends. And that is no surprise because this is when buyers typically have time off of work to go see houses. Weekends are also when listing agents will schedule their open houses for. And finally, if the house has multiple offers, you’ll often see an offer deadline for Sunday. Also, sometimes before choosing an offer, listing agents will call your lender to make sure that they have done the proper verification of your income, credit score, assets etc. Or maybe you want the lender to run numbers for you on a certain property before you put your offer in over the weekend. Noticing a trend? Real estate happens on the weekends! Hearing back from your lender Monday morning for an updated pre-approval letter (you’ll need this to submit your offer) or for a breakdown of what your monthly payment will be on a house you want to put an offer in, could be too late. Therefore, it’s best to work with a lender who will be available by email or call on the weekends. 
The second reason that you might not want to work with your bank is that unlike private lenders, big banks have big hoops to jump through. This means underwriting your loan can take a longer time. So for a lot of the big banks, they need 45 days to close as opposed to private lenders who can all close within 30 days. This amount of time is from when your offer is accepted to when you get your keys. If you’re not coming up on the end of your lease anytime soon or you already own a home, it might not matter if closing takes 45 days versus 30 days. But that timeline might really matter for the seller. Here’s why.
Right now, you don’t know what house you’re going to buy. Perhaps you’re going to buy a home that is vacant. When sellers list a home that is vacant, they’re looking for a buyer who can close quickly. AKA 30 days. There are also some lendesr who can close in 2-3 weeks. Offers with these shorter timeframes are going to be prioritized over an offer from a buyer who needs a 45 day close. That’s because the seller has carrying costs (insurance, possible HOA fees, taxes, utilities etc). This is why it’s imperative that you work with a lender who has the ability to close quickly (30 days) just in case you need to in order to get your offer accepted.
When it comes to choosing a lender, my advice is to always go with a local lender that has been recommended by your real estate agent or a friend of yours who has purchased in the area recently. 
For a great lender contact, reach out! I’m happy to share.

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