Reflections on 30 Years in the Mortgage Industry

The year was 1987, and when I started my mortgage gig, mortgage brokers were a new phenomenon in the industry. Back then, people were used to going to their local bank for a mortgage. There were not many flavors to choose from; whatever your bank had to offer dictated your choice, and if you didn’t qualify under your bank’s standards, you didn’t get a loan; plain and simple.

When I started out, rates were well into the double digits. So the industry created the adjustable rate mortgage. Until 2008 when everything changed, there was every type of mortgage available to the consumer. No Income Verification, Hybrid Mortgages, Piggyback Loans; you name it we had it. Then along came home equity loans, which made for even more choices to the consumer.

Mortgage Brokers were doing three quarters of all new mortgages at one point, and people had long stopped asking what we did. As rates continued to fall, people refinanced and refinanced again. They took money out of their homes for vacations, new cars and just to pay off higher priced loans.

Then came 2008, and it all came crashing down. Banks failed, markets crashed, and the industry would never be the same. Banks were running scared, and suddenly nobody was getting a loan unless they could prove every nickel they made. It took a few years until things started getting better. With new regulation and continuous education standards, many of the shysters and car dealers were forced out of the industry.

Those of us that actually knew what we were doing and were never out for a quick buck survived. Housing prices came back, rates stayed low and a happy medium was reached between the borrower and lender. No Income Verification Loans no longer exist, but lenders are back to lending again. If you qualify, you will get a loan, but now there are tiers when it comes to rates. The better your credit score, the lower your loan to value the better your rate will be.

As I hit the 30 year mark this month, I am proud to have originated well over a thousand loans, with integrity and honesty. I have held hands with my clients from beginning to end, and I am proud to say that most of my loans have come from satisfied clients recommending me; the sincerest form of flattery.

I don’t expect to do this for another 30 years, but it has been an honor and a pleasure to have helped so many purchase their first and second homes and refinanced so many out of their debt.

So on this, my 30th anniversary in the mortgage industry, I thank all those that I have had the opportunity to help, and look forward to helping all those that need my help in the future.

Author: Lester Bleich, NYS Licensed MLO, NMLS #152252

My name is Lester Bleich. I am a New York State Licensed Mortgage Loan Originator, NMLS #152252. As a mortgage finance specialist since 1987, I have been privileged to have helped well over 1000 homeowners with their home mortgage financing.

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