James Frangella, Monterey, Carmel, Pacific Grove real estate specialist
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Monterey real estate, James Frangella
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It’s a little lie and not the big “ef” word.*

“What do you mean the closing date needs to be extended for another two weeks?”  I can’t quite believe I heard what this loan officer just asked.  Didn’t he bother to read the contract three weeks ago?

“We need, uh, a paystub from his, uh, new job and that, uh, won’t happen until, uh, later in the new month.”  The loan officer is really uncomfortable having to tell me this.  I can tell from the tone in his voice and using “uh” a lot.

I couldn’t help it.  I had to ask.

“So how long did it take you to figure that one out?”  I’m biting my lip trying to keep the sarcasm from dripping all over my phone.

Honestly, having a paystub is one of the most basic requirements for obtaining a real estate loan for just about every home buyer.  Gone are the days when all a nearly-dead buyer had to do was fog a mirror before banks would lend a million dollars.  Nowadays, one needs a down payment, relatively good credit and … this is really important; a job.  Y’know, a place where one goes to work and gets paid so that he can buy groceries and make a mortgage payment.

I am beginning to wonder about this hot-shot, highly-successful senior loan officer.  He must think I’m stupid.  I used to have a lot of respect for this guy.  Now I don’t.  I don’t care if he drives a big fancy car or lives in a mansion along the Salinas-Monterey Highway all because of his very successful mortgage loan career, which just might be based on lying to buyers, sellers and agents or maybe just being stupid.

Loan officers usually receive a fully executed contract immediately upon acceptance.  Let’s get the show on the road, for cryin’ out loud!  You would think that most lenders would actually read the purchase agreement – assuming they can read English – AND count the number of days until closing so that they can be ready to fund the loan on time.  Of course, one would have to assume they can count too.

Everything I’ve read always tells buyers to be preapproved for their home loan before buying a house.  So it is quite natural for listing agents and sellers to ask about the buyer’s ability to make good on the contract.  Also, listing agents and sellers need to feel assured the buyer’s lender knows what he or she is doing.  That’s what pre-approval letters are for.  The loan officer is supposed to review bank statements, tax returns, credit checks and most importantly, make sure the buyer has a job - before sending the excitable buyer out into the market place.

That’s what I love about real estate.  After all this time, I learn something new every day.


* Fraud