Home ownership is part of what many people consider realizing the American Dream. Purchasing a home, especially if it is your first home, is an exciting experience that comes with challenges. Very few people are able to pay for their home outright and instead, take out a home loan, or mortgage, from a financial institution. They may not realize the credit unions offer mortgages with many benefits.
“Credit Unions are well-known for providing a better value to customers,” said Matt Herrick, Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Southland Credit Union in Santa Monica. “Credit unions generally offer a full range or mortgage options to fit many different buyers.”
If you are a member of a credit union, or considering joining one, there are many benefits to using a credit union for a mortgage.
Many credit unions require the homebuyer to put down a minimum down payment of five percent, which will be matched with conventional financing, Herrick said. Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans are another option offered by many large banks, but these loans tend to have larger fees, Herrick said.
Herrick summarized some of the advantages of using a credit union for a mortgage:
— Credit unions offer lower-cost private mortgage insurance (PMI) compared to big banks for homebuyers that cannot provide at least a 20 percent down payment.
— Historically, credit unions have offered lower interest rates on mortgages.
— Unlike some banks, credit unions offer loans not only for people purchasing their primary residence, but also for buyers of a second home, investment property and multi-family properties.
— Many credit unions partner with local real estate agencies to give a commission rebate after a home is purchased, which could save thousands.
Before you go house hunting, visit your local credit union’s loan officer to learn about the benefits of borrowing with your credit union and receive a preapproval.
“We have dedicated loan officers who will talk members throughout the entire process and help them select the best loan that meets their needs,” Herrick said.
Southland Credit Union is located at 525 Santa Monica Blvd. in Santa Monica.
For more information, call 888.898.9199 or visit SouthlandCU.org.