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7 Reasons to Choose a Mortgage Broker over On-Line Lenders

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1. Personal Advice: Breakwater Mortgage Corporation calls Hampton Roads and the surrounding communities (Norfolk, Suffolk, Chesapeake and Portsmouth) home and an on-line lender could be located anywhere. Breakwater Mortgage Corp. is located in Virginia Beach and Williamsburg, Virginia. Our team provides personal mortgage business services that enable mortgage clients to discuss their personal financial scenarios for mortgage lending that is often not available with on-line lending. Breakwater Mortgage’s philosophy: Your Home, Your family, Our Pleasure, is based on our personal and professional ethics, enabling our clients trust, and demonstrating our abilities through our confidence and experience. Face to face mortgage financial discussions allow Breakwater Mortgage associates to effectively communicate with the clients to meet their personalized needs in a professional manner. The challenging questions are answered concisely and directly by the Breakwater staff. By choosing a local professional mortgage broker, clients are empowered to gain trust, respect, and a greater understanding of loan products that are available. The dialog between the local broker and borrower allows for the best loan product to emerge for the refinancing homeowner or new home purchaser. The benefit of utilizing a local broker versus on-line lenders eliminates delay and possible confusion in the completion of on-line documents.

2. Problem Resolution: The local broker has a great advantage over the on-line lender, though both are able to solve issues regarding the loan process. When working with an on-line lender, one of the determining factors that can help you decide in choosing your mortgage approach is your familiarity with the internet. With a local lender, other factors come into play: home purchase procedures, a realtor’s advice, a local mortgage professional’s availability, personal refinance requirements not expressed on paper, and other pertinent documents related to the mortgage financial transaction. For clients with more detailed transactions, challenging credit issues, or living in a tight home market, he or she will have more flexibility and personal attention by choosing a local mortgage professional.

3. Consumer Protection: Peruse the on-line mortgage web site. Does the internet web site have methods in place to facilitate the complaint process? If not, consider a different lender or broker to handle your loan process. Most on-line mortgages are sold to new lenders. This can create challenges in first time payments, follow-on payments, and obtaining follow-on support to solve issues by the on-line lender’s business approach. Local brokers, loan officers, and other mortgage specialists often develop relationships with their lenders to help in solving client’s needs and issues. This approach generally eliminates the void of personal distance that an on-line lender may incur.

4. Formal Complaints Regarding Mortgage Lending Services: Each state has different laws and procedures in providing/obtaining derogatory information regarding your chosen lender. Breakwater Mortgage operates in Virginia. Our governing body is: The Bureau of Financial Institutions of the State Corporation Commission, Commonwealth of Virginia. This office provides oversight, code interpretation, training, and audit review of our organization. Consumers may telephone the Bureau to research complaints against any mortgage organization to ensure the organization is currently in good standing. On-line lenders may not fall under the Bureau’s scrutiny and may not be as astute as a local broker or local mortgage professional.

5. No Cost Closings and Add-On Fees: On-Line/Television mortgage lenders sometimes promise a no fee loan. The key word is fee. Fee represents loan origination fees (often referred to as points, but this is not correct) but may not disclose other charges associated with the loan. Costs to you as the borrower can be service charges, mailings/postage, closing locations, premiums, insurance, appraisals, title costs, etc. The careful consumer will often realize that television and on-line lending may not be the applicable choice. A local professional, such as Breakwater Mortgage, can offer alternatives and trim add on costs.

6. Credit Issues: Borrowers with questionable credit may be eliminated by on-line lenders or charged a much higher interest rate than the rate advertised, which is usually provided to the best credit applicants. Breakwater Mortgage Corp.’s staff provides services that support consumers with a wide variety of credit scores and financial challenges. Breakwater Mortgage’s mortgage specialists/loan officers/support staff/processors all work together to provide our client the ideal experience to purchase or refinance a property. The residential properties can be primary residences, investment properties, or a wonderful vacation home. Breakwater Mortgage’s team values our clients, realtors and support associates. Referrals, returning clients, and follow-on refinance business provides a long-term relationship which improves our success level. On-Line lenders usually do not have the same connection within the local community and typically do not share the same level of repeat business. At Breakwater Mortgage (Virginia Beach, Williamsburg) we strive for repeat and new business. To show the level of desire to help the local community and potential home buyers, we provide a free service that enables clients with questionable credit to potentially qualify for a home through a ‘Get Mortgage Ready Program,’ designed specifically for those with credit issues.

6. First Time Homebuyers: Breakwater Mortgage in Virginia Beach has special programs with lenders that have excellent competitive rates that cater to first time homebuyers. On-Line lenders may not offer the variety of mortgage lending programs that mortgage brokers provide. Many brokers may have in excess of 60 lenders to support the client to provide the best product through each lender’s specialized products.

7. Primary Mortgage Insurance (PMI) and Other Insurances: Bottom line up front: PMI is to support the lending institution and NOT the homeowner! If you have a single loan that equals 80 percent or greater of the home value, the likelihood of the lender requiring PMI (to protect the lender) is great but not always required (check with your broker, they have multiple programs that the on-line lender may not!!). Many consumers may perceive that PMI is for their benefit and often find out after a life issue that prevents the consumer from meeting the financial home obligations that PMI is for the lenders benefit! Other insurances that are available to protect the consumer include credit life and mortgage life insurance. Other insurance options are available and consumers should check with a local insurance representative to provide the best options available.

About the Author

Jay R. Popejoy's educational background in financial and mortgage lending
includes B.S. Degrees (Marketing/Business Education)and a M.B.A. program. Jay has 19 years of professional experience in
banking, finance, logistics management, civil affairs and
international development. Jay R. Popejoy is currently Managing
Director of Breakwater Mortgage Corp. in Virginia Beach and is a senior staff officer for the US Army.


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