Getting a broker to arrange your loan can certainly save a lot of time and hassle, but borrowers still have to do their homework to ensure the service they expect is the one that's delivered.
Obtaining genuinely objective recommendations from brokers, confusion over just who's a lender and who's a broker and lender delays in processing applications mean that using a broker is not always the quick and easy solution to home borrowing it may at first appear.
With the proportion of loans arranged through brokers rising from nowhere to around 30 percent in just a few years, the industry has attracted all manner of people and organisations wanting to enter this lucrative commission-based industry.
Establishing that any broker you intend to use has experience and qualifications as well as being committed to the industry code of practice is vital to ensure you're getting the best loan for your needs, within a reasonable timeframe.
A number of lenders are also now acting as brokers and some borrowers may be confused over whether they're dealing with an independent broker offering a range of loans, an agent for one lender only, or someone who wears both hats.
Borrowers must establish with any loan representative just what their role is and how they're being paid so they can judge the integrity of loan recommendations being provided.
Once a broker is found and a loan recommended, some lenders have had difficulty coping with the volume of loans coming through the broker channel leading to delays lasting weeks.
This can be a major concern for those home buyers who have little time to arrange loan finance upon purchase.
The 12 things you must know before obtaining your home loan through a broker:
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