Couple with laptop searching for the best mortgage ratesWouldn’t it be amazing to have access to your own mortgage industry insider who could advise you how to shop for Washington State mortgage rates? is the creation of a real honest-to-goodness Washington State mortgage broker here to help you. As a nationally acclaimed mortgage professional certified by the National Association of Mortgage Brokers, my passion is to educate and empower consumers like you about mortgage rates so you make an informed decision when shopping for a mortgage.

So sit back and explore all that this website has to offer on how to shop for mortgages in Washington State. And if you find this information to be of value to you, please consider contacting me for your mortgage needs. I’m here for you.

How to Use the Website

  1. Learn about the different  home loans available to Washington state homeowners
  2. Get free rate quotes with no personal info or SSN required
  3. View our exclusive mortgage rate charts showing rates for the past 30 days
  4. Discover typical closing costs for a mortgage in Washington state
  5. Read daily mortgage commentary about whether to lock or float on our blog
  6. Submit a Washington state mortgage application for a pre-approval or refinance

Tips for Shopping for Mortgage Rates in Washington State

A recent study shockingly found that mortgage shoppers spend twice as long shopping for a car as they do researching a home loan to find competitive mortgage rates.

Don’t make the same mistake. Take advantage of this website and the following tips to avoid making a bad decision that can cost you thousands of dollars in the long run.

1. Determine the right home loan before shopping for mortgage rates.

The 30-year fixed rate mortgage is as American as apple pie and baseball, yet there are numerous other home loans that may be a better fit for your situation.

Take the time and do the research to learn about all the different home loan programs available to you. There are advantages and disadvantages to each program, but you typically will find one or more best suited to your situation based on your personal preferences.

2. Save time by getting mortgage rate quotes from mortgage companies rather than banks and credit unions.

Simply put, banks and credit unions have a much higher cost structure which leads to higher mortgage rates than dedicated mortgage companies.

Loan officers at banks and credit unions are employees whereas loan officers at mortgage companies are 100% commissioned-based salespeople. Banks and credit unions have to pay salaries and benefits to their employees whether or not they generate business whereas mortgage companies only pay their loan officers when a loan closes and generally do not pay for costly benefits. Banks and credit unions also have to maintain expensive, high traffic retail locations whereas mortgage companies can select less expensive office space.

Combined this leads to a much more expensive cost to originate a loan for banks and credit unions. Banks and credit unions make up for that additional cost by marking up the mortgage rate and charging higher closing costs than mortgage companies. In fact, you will find mortgage rates at banks and credit unions generally to be 0.250% – 0.500% higher than mortgage companies.

3. Compare at least 2 mortgage companies at the same time to get the most competitive mortgage rates.

Shopping for mortgage rates is a critical step in the home loan process but one that a lot of mortgage shoppers do not devote enough attention. The reason? Studies have shown that people by nature don’t like sharing their personal information with mortgage companies whom they don’t yet know or trust.

Be sure to make your comparisons on the same day and, even better, at the same time. Rates can be volatile on a day-to-day basis and have been known to change within the same day which can cause you to miss out on getting the most competitive mortgage rates.

Bonus tip : Make sure to avoid submitting your information to websites offering quotes from several lenders unless you want to be bombarded incessantly.

4. Compare closing costs for the same type of home loan at the same rate.

Equally important, compare closing costs between mortgage companies for the same type of home loan at the same rate. Don’t try to compare different home loan programs and don’t try to compare the same type of home loan at different rates.

Without an apples-to-apples comparison, it is easy to become confused and inadvertently select the offer with the lowest mortgage rate when it actually is a worse deal because it is loaded with points and/or junk fees. When you compare the same type of home loan at the same mortgage rate, comparisons become much clearer.

5. Choose your loan officer carefully.

It’s easy to fall in the trap that shopping for mortgage rates is the same as shopping for any other commodity, like a car. While it’s true that a mortgage itself is a commodity, the danger lies in the fact that getting a mortgage approved is much more complicated than people realize. Unlike a car which anyone can buy, not everyone can obtain a mortgage due to their individual financial situation and circumstances.

This is where the experience and knowledge of the individual loan officer comes into play. And not all loan officers are created equal.

Don’t be shy. Interview your loan officer and check their credentials. Verify at minimum that your loan officer is licensed (not simply registered *) through the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System & Registry (NMLS). Licensed loan originators must :

  • Complete 20 hours of pre-licensure education
  • Pass the National component of the SAFE MLO Test with a minimum score of 75%
  • Pass the State component of the SAFE MLO Test with a minimum score of 75%
  • Pass a criminal background check annually
  • Demonstrate financial responsibility by submitting a credit report annually
  • Complete 8 hours of continuing education each year

* Loan officers at banks and credit unions are exempt from the SAFE Act and not required to meet these licensing requirements

Top loan officers go further by attaining professional certification through the leading mortgage industry organization, the National Association of Mortgage Brokers (NAMB). Due to the tough eligibility requirements, rigorous exam and continuing education requirements, only a very small percentage of loan originators ultimately earn and maintain certification.

Take a quick minute to check out my professional credentials and learn more about me.

6. Stay informed with the latest news to get the most competitive Washington mortgage rates.

It doesn’t take too much research to identify Washington state mortgage companies offering the most competitive mortgage rates, but you can’t make an informed decision whether to lock or float without having the information to do so.

Stay up-to-date with the latest mortgage news by reading our daily mortgage commentary posted on our blog.

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