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Ryan’s Mortgage Blog:
Before I get started I wanted to applaud the Florida Gators for winning the Men’s NCAA basketball championship for the second year in a row….which enabled me to win my bracket challenge amongst friends!
Ok, back to the topic at hand…the loan signing. Being a licensed loan signing agent (notary) and working at a brokerage I have a unique outlook on the signing. Lenders/Brokers who offer their customers the best service and are up front with everything do not have much to worry about at the loan signing. On the other hand, a broker who hasn’t been honest about all the figures in the loan would have a lot too worry about at the loan signing (they would be worry the customer would see the real numbers and would back out). By law, when a customer applies for a mortgage loan, the broker/lender must give the customer a “good-faith estimate” of the costs to do the loan within three days of applying. These are just estimates, but barring any set-backs can be some what accurate. In some cases brokers may pad the numbers for wiggle room, sometimes customers may gladly be surprised with cheaper costs than quoted, but others aren’t so lucky.
The loan signing may be the first time you see the actual costs of the loan. The signing is YOUR time to go over the details and figures of the loan. Keep in mind there is no way you can read the whole document word for word at the signing which would take a whole day. You do get a copy to take home for your records. The typical signing, if done properly, lasts about an hour to an hour and a half depending if there are co-signers. If you are doing the signing at a brokers office do not let them rush you through anything, that may be a red flag there is something they don’t want you to see. A good notary will do their job and point out all the important facts and figures to you and let you know what you are signing. It is in everyone’s best interest to get the loan completed fast and on time, or penalties may occur, or you may loose the loan completely and have to start all over. So before you decide not to sign, make sure it is not because you are “nervous” or have “cold feet”.
If for any reason you feel you have been misled and the numbers are not what you agreed to, do not sign the documents. With the notary still there call or talk to the broker/lender directly and see if you can work it out. In some cases, you can still sign and cancel within three days (Right of recession), but this mostly applies only to owner-occupied refinance transactions.
As a notary I was trained to point out 5 important pages to the client that were the “meat” of the loan:
1 – Estimated Closing Statement – Shows how much the borrowers owes/collects
2 – Deed of Trust – Make sure the Borrower information is correct.
3 – Note – This will show your interest rate and where, when, and how to pay your mortgage.
4 – Notice of Right to Cancel – Not all loans will have this, but this is the page you would need to fill out if you wanted to cancel (Right of recession).
5 – Truth in Lending Disclosure – Similar to the information on the Note, but has APR and total payment info.
Hope this helps if any of you have a signing soon. For those in the market, I know of a fantastic brokerage and a great notary agent in the San Luis Obispo Area 🙂 If you have any questions feel free to reach me at 805-540-0866 or

Written by Keith Byrd - Go to Keith's Website/Profile