When you’re starting the home-buying process, you may want to contact a mortgage broker to help you out. Mortgage brokers will help connect you with lenders that can offer you the best mortgage rates and products. In other words, a mortgage broker acts as a middleman between yourself and the lender.
We’ve outlined mortgage information and a few mortgage brokers in Maryland to get you started.
Get a Mortgage in Maryland
Tip: compare 2-3 brokers
The Best Mortgage Brokers in Maryland:
- Best for a Variety of Options: Alliance Mortgage Funding
- Best Customer Service: Freedmont Mortgage Funding
- Best for a Quick Closing: Apex Home Loans
- Best for Personalization: Federal Hill Mortgage
- Best for Immediate Assistance: Paradigm Mortgage Services
- The Best Mortgage Brokers in Maryland:
- Should You Use a Mortgage Broker?
- Mortgages Explained
- Which Mortgage Broker is Best for You?
- Lender Credit Score Minimums in Maryland
- Current Mortgage Rates in Maryland
- Average Days to Close on a Loan
- The 5 Best Mortgage Brokers in Maryland
- Next Steps to Finding Your Mortgage
- Frequently Asked Questions
Should You Use a Mortgage Broker?
Whether you’re making your first home purchase or you’re an experienced buyer, using a mortgage broker certainly has its benefits. A mortgage broker is a licensed and regulated financial professional who works with you to find the right mortgage option across several different lenders.
A mortgage lender may have multiple mortgage options to choose from, but lenders can only educate you about their own products. Mortgage brokers may charge you a fee for their services, so be sure to ask what they charge and how their fees are paid. A mortgage broker can:
- Represent your interests: A mortgage broker works for you, not the lender. A good broker will want to find the right mortgage product for you at the best rate possible. Many brokers spend a good deal of time interviewing you to understand your goals so they can best advise you on how to approach the mortgage process.
- Help with tricky situations: It’s no secret that getting any loan with a low credit score or a spotty employment history can be difficult. Mortgage brokers are familiar with several lenders and usually know which ones are more flexible and easiest to work with. A good broker can identify lenders that accommodate your needs.
- Save you time: Working with a mortgage broker can save you a lot of time. If you go through the mortgage process alone, you may spend countless hours researching lenders and studying up on mortgage types. If you work with a reputable broker, you’ll save time because you’ll have someone experienced to give you the information and advice you need.
Before you begin, it’s a good idea to understand the different mortgage types and term options you can choose from. Mortgage types can include government-backed loans as well as conventional loans. The mortgage type you qualify for will depend on several factors, including your income and veteran status. Mortgage terms refer to the length of time you repay your mortgage. This can vary anywhere between 5 and 30 years.
Conventional loans are a standard loan option available to most anyone who meets the minimum income and credit requirements. These mortgages are not backed by the federal government, so they have fewer eligibility requirements. Conventional loans can be offered in either fixed or adjustable mortgage rates.
FHA loans are government-backed mortgages managed by the Federal Housing Administration. This mortgage type may offer lower minimum down payments and credit score requirements from borrowers. To qualify, you must meet income and other requirements set by both the lender and the Federal Housing Administration.
VA loans are a mortgage type backed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for qualifying military members. These loans allow you to finance 100% of your home purchase and may also offer lower interest rates. To qualify, you must meet length of service requirements set by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
A 30-year fixed mortgage term offers predictable monthly payments throughout the entire mortgage repayment period. Your mortgage rate will be set at the beginning of your loan term and will not change and your mortgage will be repaid over 30 years with this option.
Like the 30-year fixed mortgage term, the 15-year fixed term offers predictable monthly payments with a set mortgage rate. The shorter repayment term of 15 years offers the option to pay less over the lifetime of your loan. However, you can expect higher monthly payments since you will be repaying in a shorter period of time.
An adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) means that your mortgage rate will adjust throughout the lifetime of your loan. The 5/1 ARM offers both fixed and adjustable interest rates. With this mortgage term, you will pay a fixed rate for the first 5 years of your mortgage. After that, your mortgage rate will adjust yearly.
You may also find similar mortgage terms, including a 3/1, 7/1 and 10/1 ARM. These terms are similar to the 5/1 and you can expect to pay a fixed rate for the number of years equal to the first number in these terms. In this case, you’d pay a fixed rate for either 3, 7 or 10 years.
Which Mortgage Broker is Best for You?
One of the most overwhelming parts of the home buying process is finding the right mortgage broker. With so many out there, how do you choose? Here are just a few qualities you should look for in your broker:
- Options: First, does the broker work with the mortgage type and term you’re interested in? If there are a few different types you’re considering, it’s helpful to find a broker that can help you find a number of options. If you’re unsure of which type and term is best for you, a mortgage broker can help you narrow down your choices.
- Customer service: As with any service company, you’ll want to find a broker that can give you the customer service you deserve. Look for brokers that offer multiple ways to connect and those that respond to your questions in a timely manner. When you’re comparing brokers, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Not only will it help you gain useful information, it will also let you test out the broker’s responsiveness.
- Resources: Your mortgage broker will function as your main resource for all things mortgage-related. A good broker will be able to explain your mortgage options and help you navigate any questions that come up during the process. The broker you work with should make you feel at ease and comfortable with your mortgage decisions.
Lender Credit Score Minimums in Maryland
Lenders look at your credit score to determine whether you will be a reliable borrower. Most lenders have a minimum credit score requirement. The higher your credit score, the more likely it is that a lender will accept you. Lenders may even offer you a reduced mortgage rate if your credit score is in the good or excellent range.
|Lender||Minimum Credit Score Required|
Current Mortgage Rates in Maryland
Think of mortgage rates as you would think of stocks. Mortgage-backed securities are traded much like stocks are. Mortgage rates will fluctuate based on the current state of the economy and the housing market. Benzinga is committed to monitoring current mortgage rates and updating our charts to reflect the most recent data.
|Loan Type||Current Mortgage Rate|
|5/1 ARM (adjustable rate)||3.504%|
Average Days to Close on a Loan
The final step in the home buying process is closing on your loan. During this time, you will arrange a home inspection and appraisal of your home. This will determine the current condition of the home and allow you to finalize the terms of your contract.
You will finalize financing with your lender during this time as well. Finally, you will perform a final walkthrough of your home prior to your closing date to confirm the home’s condition is as stated in your contract.
The 5 Best Mortgage Brokers in Maryland
You’ll want to carefully select your mortgage broker much as you would carefully select your mortgage lender. You should trust your broker to help guide you through the mortgage process to make it as stress-free as possible. Here are some of the best mortgage brokers in Maryland.
1. Alliance Mortgage Funding, Inc.: Best for Variety of Options
Alliance Mortgage Funding checks all the boxes.
It can help you find the best mortgage lender no matter what your situation is. Its experience includes assisting with first home purchases, a refinance loan and a variety of government-backed loans.
Alliance Mortgage Funding also offers resources on its website to help you understand credit score basics, mortgage types and more.
2. Freedmont Mortgage Funding: Best for Customer Service
Freedmont Mortgage Funding starts helping you from the minute you visit its website. You can immediately find a mortgage calculator and information about buying and refinancing your home.
We consider this one of the best brokers for first-time homebuyers because of the resources and customer service offered. Find a broker that has an easy-to-use website that can help guide you before you speak to someone.
This broker even offers a free webinar to help you further understanding how to buy a home in the current market.
3. Apex Home Loans: Best for a Quick Closing
Apex Home Loans offers unique services to its customers, including Apex Approval. Do you want to close on your home in a short period of time? If so, this might be a great option for you.
Beyond prequalification and preapproval, Apex Approved promises to put you in the best position to close on your home in as little as 15 days. This level of approval means that the processing and underwriting work for your loan is completed.
Let’s say you anticipate entering into a competitive bidding situation on a home. This may give you the edge you need to make your offer more attractive to sellers.
4. Federal Hill Mortgage: Best for Personalization
Federal Hill Mortgage offers personalized solutions for all of its customers. It offers professional advice and assistance for many mortgages, including purchase, refinance and commercial mortgages.
This broker can advise you on what you can afford and qualify for based on your credit history. After your purchase, Federal Hill Mortgage can also guide you on how to build and use your home equity.
You’ll also get guidance through each step of the home buying process so you receive the best rate and a fair closing process.
5. Paradigm Mortgage Services, Inc.: Best for Immediate Assistance
Paradigm Mortgage Services is another broker that specializes in customized solutions.
Its website contains resources that can help you estimate mortgage payments, understand the benefits of refinancing and more. Better yet, its website offers the opportunity to begin a chat immediately to answer any questions that you may have.
This is a great perk if you’re looking for quick answers to questions about the mortgage process.
Next Steps to Finding Your Mortgage
Mortgage brokers can be a great resource when you’re planning to take out a mortgage in Maryland. If you’re interested in working with an experienced broker who can help find the right mortgage for you, be sure to have your information ready.
You should prepare to speak with your mortgage broker about your financial situation and what you need in your home and mortgage. This information can help them find the best mortgage to meet your needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
1) Q: How do I get pre-approved?
First, you need to fill out an application and submit it to the lender of your choice. For the application you need 2 previous years of tax returns including your W-2’s, your pay stub for past month, 2 months worth of bank statements and the lender will run your credit report. Once the application is submitted and processed it takes anywhere from 2-7 days to be approved or denied. Check out our top lenders and lock in your rate today!
2) Q: How much interest will I pay?
Interest that you will pay is based on the interest rate that you received at the time of loan origination, how much you borrowed and the term of the loan. If you borrow $208,800 at 3.62% then over the course of a 30-year loan you will pay $133,793.14 in interest, assuming you make the monthly payment of $951.65. For a purchase mortgage rate get a quote here. If you are looking to refinance you can get started quickly here.