We’re in the midst of refinancing our home, to take advantage of the current attractive rates. It’s been an eye-opening experience to see how the process has evolved since we last refinanced 5–8 years ago.
The lenders’ reliance upon web-based data collection services has certainly eased our burden, and saved us time in supplying the needed information. Interactions with the loan processing agent take place by phone (or less satisfactorily, via an online document tracking mechanism.) We deliver follow-up documents to the loan processing agent by scanning and emailing them, or rarely, by faxing them. (I believe the lender’s interactions with our insurance agents are still via fax…)
The last time we did this, faxing was the primary data delivery channel. This time, faxing is a hassle, as we no longer have a dedicated fax line, and the fax machine is connected to a phone line on an exceptional basis only. Scanning is more reassuring because we know what the document looks like before it gets sent.
The other huge benefit to this more technology-savvy process is its speed: it took less than a week to go from the decision, over breakfast on Saturday, to explore refi rates to the point at which we had received conditional approval in writing and a locked-in rate. The appraiser showed up 2 days later.
To our surprise our current lender did not offer an attractive refi package, despite our stellar track record at making payments; their rate schedule on what constitutes “conforming loan amounts” by county is years out of date. So they’re losing our business.
It’s a brave new world out there, for those lucky enough to qualify for refinancing. The rates are certainly attractive.