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Protect yourself as a Home Buyer

Home Buyer Beware or Be Empowered?

Home buyer beware as call center lenders hit the airwaves and internet with better ads and bigger promises.

Call center lenders run expensive advertising campaigns to convince you that getting a mortgage is as easy as downloading an app or following the advice of a Muppet.

You can easily protect yourself from the clever ads of call center lenders. In our case, educated home buyers are empowered home buyers. Empowered home buyers make informed decisions.

This article was originally written in 2010, and updated in December 2017 to be more current, using current examples.

Protect Yourself

Clever story telling, cute characters, and “too good to be true” promises of zero hassle, do-it-yourself mortgages will not stand a chance against an educated consumer.

  1. Do your research online first – The very fact that you are reading this now pushes you outside the reach of most predators.  A lender that has your best interest in mind will make available to you the answers to most of your questions online.  Once a lender has educated and empowered you online, go to step 2 and listen for consistency between published and in-person information.
  2. Ask questions – Predators will give up easily on you if you ask too many questions.  Remember, a predator is looking for easy prey.  If you are constantly asking questions, they will tire and eventually stop returning your calls and emails.
  3. Ask questions about the answers – When you get an answer to your question, question the answer.  A common tactic of predators is to tell you exactly the answer you were looking for.  This type of quick “exactly what you wanted to hear” type of answer should pull the alarm in your head. If it sounds too good to be true, it might be. Listen closely and trust your instinct.

Be an Empowered Consumer

Buyer beware implies that you can trust no one.  It sounds like “listen, they all lie, so good luck”.

In today’s world of social networks (Facebook), social referrals (Yelp, Amazon) and the relatively wide spread usage of smart phones (internet enabled) – It’s so easy to ask questions and get answers.

Need a Second Opinion? Click Here for Help!

I will leave you with this – Education is predator repellant.  As an educated buyer, you will ask more important questions and you will make more informed decisions.

About the Author

Scott Schang

A 20+ year veteran of the Mortgage and Real Estate industry, I am passionate about educating and empowering consumers. I have been writing about consumer protection issues and making sense of complicated real estate and mortgage topics on this website since 2007

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  • Dave Axness says:

    I have to agree with your fervent mission, Scott! Messages like yours are slowly getting out and sinking in because buyers recognize the inherent truth of what you’re saying. Everyone I come across is so tired and suspect of the false motives of not only lenders but also from anyone marketing to them. I think I’m going to steal your “Education is a predator repellant” and use it often! Keep up the good work.