A common misconception people have when buying a home is that the bigger the mortgage company, the better the access to competitive rates and 24-hour customer service. But Emily and Evan, a recently-married couple that needed a last-minute pre-approval letter to make an offer on a home, found out that their big mortgage company wasn’t nearly as efficient as they hoped.
Here’s their story.
After years of renting an apartment in the North Shore of Boston, Emily and Evan, an event and marketing associate at a museum and a web developer for an e-commerce company, decided it was time to put down some roots and buy their first home.
“We spent so many years living in apartments together, going from place to place. Evan had never lived in a real house, and I had these great memories from growing up in the same house for 18 years. We were eager to start growing that family experience for ourselves and begin building new memories in a new home. ”
Despite their realtor’s advice to work with a local lender, Emily and Evan initially started working with a “big box” mortgage brand, assuming that the company’s size would mean they’d have access to the lowest rates and quickest response time.
“We figured bah, local, I know that sounds attractive, but a big box company will be able to do what we need quickly and offer us the best deal.”
But when they found a home that they wanted to make a last-minute offer on, they couldn’t get a hold of anyone at their mortgage company. They followed up on a recommendation from their agent to reach out to Own Up and within an hour, thanks to Own Up’s innovative pre-qualification technology, they had the pre-approval letter they needed.
“We found a home we wanted to make an offer on, but when we really needed a last minute pre-approval letter we couldn’t get a hold of anybody! Our realtor at the time recommended we reach out to Own Up, so I called them and immediately got someone on the phone. They had a quick conversation with me and were so kind, so patient, so informative, and really just warm. They gave me so much confidence that even though this was last minute, and even though we didn’t know them well, it would be ok. And it was. They got us the pre-approval in like 10 minutes. It was insane! I couldn’t believe it. They absolutely saved the day.”
Emily and Evan didn’t end up getting that first house they made an offer on, but they were so impressed by their experience with Own Up that they continued to work with us throughout the following months as their home search continued.
“We went into this whole process pretty ignorant on the mechanisms of it all, and what we loved so much about Own Up was how well they explained things to us without making us feel like complete dopes. They made all this new terminology and crazy process feel accessible, doable, and approachable. From the beginning we had everyone telling us that a VA loan (a loan provided by private lenders with a portion of the loan guaranteed by the VA) wasn’t attractive and that we’d be hard pressed to find someone that would accept it or give us a second look. It was super disheartening. The team at Own Up were there to say ‘that’s nonsense,’ and they made us feel like our VA loan wasn’t a deterrent, but an asset. It meant a lot.”
And when it finally came time to make an offer on their dream home, Own Up’s lender matching technology was able to present them with loan offers from the top rated local lenders. Not only did Own Up match them to a lender that closed their loan on-time, but they were able to secure a preferred interest rate that will save them $38,000 over the lifetime of their loan.
“We went to see a house in this little neighborhood that I never knew was tucked up behind city hall in Peabody. From the minute we walked into the front yard it felt like a little oasis. We fell head over heels in love with the house and ended up hitting it off with the realtor as well. So much so that we were talking with her in their kitchen for so long that the owners actually came back from driving around the neighborhood with their pets in the car.”
“We ended up hitting it off with them too, and by the time we left the owners were asking their realtor if she could represent both sides and move ahead with a dual disclosure. They introduced us to their finance guy who was right there in the kitchen with us, but we knew we were going to stick with Own Up. They had been a champion for us throughout the entire process, and in the end they came through and secured us an amazing rate. I can’t describe to you what saving that much money means to us on a daily basis.”
Now that Emily is on the other side of the process, we asked her what she would tell future homebuyers just beginning their search. Her advice? “Go local, and go with Own Up.”
“If anyone were to be weighing their options I’d say just hear us out. Don’t do big box. Go local, and go with Own Up. They’re so friendly, so effective, and so informative and we couldn’t possibly be more grateful for how they treated us, what they did for us, and the speed that they did it.”
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