Should You Go with A Local or National Lender?

We get asked this question all the time – is it better to go with a local or national lender for your mortgage? It’s a complicated question and the answer tends to vary depending on the state of the market. 

Currently, we are in a very competitive market. And when the market is highly competitive, most agents will recommend a local lender over a national lender. Here are four reasons you should choose a local lender.

Quicker Pre-Approval

Arguably the most important difference between a local lender and a national lender is accessibility. With a national lender, you likely won’t be able to get ahold of someone outside of normal business hours. Local lenders often provide their cell phone number and make themselves available to you after hours and even on the weekends. This is especially important when we’re trying to get a pre-approval in with an offer.

Higher Chance Your Offer Will Be Accepted 

Local lenders are immersed in the community, and that means they know most of the agents. Agents, like buyers and sellers, want to ensure the deal goes through as smoothly as possible. When a listing agent sees an offer with a pre-approval from a lender they know, they will be more apt to go with that offer because they trust the lender.

Quicker Closing

The entire process will move faster with a local lender than a national lender. The reason for this is that local lenders keep everything in house. You won’t just be another loan to them. They will know you and your contract. 

When we need information or have a question, we deal with the same person instead of calling into a call center and referencing a loan number. This helps us move the sale along much quicker. 

More Accurate Appraisal

National lenders pull from a pool of appraisers when they need to issue an appraisal. The appraiser may be from Jacksonville, or he/she may be from a surrounding area. Local lenders, on the other hand, use only local appraisers. 

A local appraiser is especially important in Jacksonville, as the city has many different areas and neighborhoods. We want an appraiser who is familiar with the specific neighborhood you are purchasing in. It’s especially important in this competitive market to have an appraiser who really knows our market and how we price our homes. 

All of the above does not mean a national lender can’t also be a great option. We just need to build a solid relationship from the beginning and work to keep the communication going.