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Finding the Right Mortgage

by MassHousing | Nov 29, 2017

Here’s how you can help your buyers when shopping for a loan

It’s hard to believe that barely a decade has passed since the Great Recession and the accompanying unrest of the subprime mortgage crisis and housing bubble. So much has changed since then. Regulations have reshaped mortgage lending, property values have fluctuated and a new generation of homebuyers has entered the market.

When choosing a loan, homebuyers will be faced with many possible lenders, each offering different features, rates and terms.

So how can you convince your buyers to choose wisely among the many mortgage offers they’re sure to encounter? Here are a few bits of advice you can give them:


Start Smart: Homebuyer Education

Knowledge is power, especially in something as complex as buying a home. That’s why we recommend that the process begins with homebuyer education. According to HUD research, pre-purchase homebuyer education helps consumers make better decisions when choosing a mortgage and results in more successful, sustainable homeownership.

Offered in-person or online, homebuyer counseling is an excellent way to prepare consumers for the rigors of the homebuying process, the responsibilities of homeownership and how building your team will help on the journey.  Among other things, a good homebuyer counseling class will teach

  • The Team: the role of the REALTOR, lender, home inspector and closing attorney
  • Budgeting: establish a plan and stick to it
  • Credit: what it is, what role it plays in getting a mortgage and how to improve one’s score
  • Mortgages: available options, rates, terms, features, etc.
  • Home inspection: what to look for and what to do with the findings
  • Closing: finalizing the deal
  • Homeownership: rights and responsibilities

Armed with this information, your buyers will be better equipped to make a smart decision and succeed over the long term. Recommending a homebuyer education class is some of the best advice you can give.


Keep it Simple: 30-Year, Fixed Rate Loans

According to the Urban Institute, the share of 30-year fixed-rate mortgages used to purchase a home stood at 88.4% in March 2017. Adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) now account for just 3.9% of purchase mortgages, compared to 42% at their height of popularity in 2005.

There’s a reason the 30-year fixed rate mortgage remains the gold standard for homebuyers. It’s a safe, predictable, reliable financing instrument. For as long as they have a fixed-rate loan, the principal and interest portion of a homeowner’s monthly payment will remain constant.

Low downpayment options are still available. These conventional mortgage loans offered by MassHousing are not only a safe and affordable option, but can also give both the buyer and seller the peace of mind of working with a trusted lender with 50 years if experience in Massachusetts.


The Lender Matters

Sure, the interest rate matters. But so too does the lender who’s quoting it.

A good lender will explain all aspects of the mortgage, be responsive to the borrower and take the time to answer all of their questions. They’ll be clear and up front about any costs associated with the loan, and won’t add on unnecessary fees or other surprises.

A good lender understands that a mortgage is a long-term commitment, and that the relationship will last well after loan closing. MassHousing partners with more than 150 lenders across the state to offer our affordable loan programs.


MassHousing: A Lending Resource for Massachusetts

More than 50,000 people have used a MassHousing Mortgage to buy a home in Massachusetts. As the state’s affordable housing bank, the value of a MassHousing loan is clear:

  • Affordable, fixed interest rates
  • Low down payment requirements
  • Mortgage Insurance with MI Plus, which helps pay the mortgage if a borrower loses their job
  • In-house loan servicing; our borrowers know who to call if they ever need us
  • No hidden fees or surprises

Your clients look to you for advice and expertise. Tell them about MassHousing, the most trusted lender in Massachusetts! Visit for more information.