Wednesday, May 28, 2014

SunTrust asked me to share my story about house hunting, which you all know Derek and I are currently knee deep in the house hunting/ selling process. If I’ve learned anything during this new adventure, it’s surrounding yourself with people you trust and respect (and who trust and respect you in return) makes everything about 10 times easier.

We started house hunting with a realtor who did not share our vision. We want a house that’s a home, something we could potentially see ourselves in for 10-15 years. He tried to talk us into investment properties. Places we could live for 2-3 years, then jump to something bigger and better. That works great for a lot of people, but it’s not what we wanted. He was a fast talker, a total salesman, and I just never felt comfortable with that.

Eventually we moved on and found a realtor that impresses us both. He 100% understands and respects our vision, he’s also not very sales-y. He doesn’t push houses on us; instead he gives us our space and let’s us take our time mulling things over on site. He’ll answer questions when asked, but doesn’t feed us any lines. Honestly, we’re starting to think of Joe as a genuine friend. We sometimes find ourselves saying, “I wonder what Joe would think of this?” or “We should ask Joe about that.” He has earned our respect, therefore we trust and value his opinion.

While finding a realtor we both enjoy working with, we’ve also had to find a mortgage broker we feel comfortable with. I think finding the mortgage broker has been the biggest headache. We have a special situation where we need to sell our current place to secure the 20% down payment, there’s also the fact that I’ve only been with my current employer for one year and was self-employed before that. When looking at mortgages: self-employment = more paperwork and more questions. Applying for a mortgage is a scary process and you want to make sure you’re working with someone you’re comfortable with.

We’ve spoken to three different mortgage brokers. The first one was a pretty basic question and answer situation where the person we were speaking with didn’t seem to care one way or the other what happened. It was an okay process, but not very personalized and not many options.

The second one we spoke with was awful. Basically, Derek had to put the phone on mute because I started going off on the guy and said some choice words in the process. I think we were small potatoes to him and he frankly didn’t care. He was offering options we weren’t comfortable with and wasn’t willing to explore anything else.

The third guy was amazing. After speaking to the second guy, it was like a welcomed breath of fresh air. He’s more than willing to work with us within our parameters and doesn’t seem to think my prior self employment is an issue. He also respected all of the good things Derek and I have going for us (our only debt is our house, everything else is paid off, good credit scores, healthy savings, etc.).

I was really scared off from the mortgage process after speaking to the second guy, but now I’m excited again. The third broker was able to put my mind at ease and assured me it’s not as scary as I had built it up to me.

Derek and I are now pre-approved for a loan we are 100% comfortable with. I’m actually excited again about house hunting and can’t wait to find the house of our dreams.

At SunTrust Bank their purpose is lighting the way to financial well being. They help you get organized, make a plan, and stay on track so you can get and stay in control of your finances. When you are confident about about your money, you can save for your goals and splurge knowingly on waht matters most to you.

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SunTrust Bank. The opinions and text are all mine.

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