(ARA) – Michele Broulliard of Berkley, Mich., really loves animals. So much so that for years, she has dreamed about opening a bed and breakfast that would double as a daycare and spa for dogs — a place where they could hang out with each other while their owners are unavailable. Where they could be with caretakers who would love and bond with them.
So how, she wondered, was she going to finance this ambitious endeavor? Brouillard considered the options: taking out a loan from a family member or friend, charging the start-up costs on her credit card, tapping into her retirement funds, or taking out a home equity loan. She ultimately decided on the latter.
“I wasn’t sure it was the right time to refinance, but my 3-year adjustable rate was rising and I decided I either had to refinance or sell the house. I didn’t want to sell the house, so I called my mortgage banker at Quicken Loans,” she says.
According to Bob Walters, chief economist at Quicken Loans, Michele’s decision is not uncommon these days. “Tapping one’s home equity for large expenses can often make more financial sense than charging those expenses to one’s credit card. Home equity rates are often significantly lower than credit card rates, which reduces interest costs. In addition, unlike non-deductible credit card debt, interest on home equity loans is usually tax-deductible. Many savvy homeowners like the idea of having Uncle Sam help out when it comes time to repay those debts,” says Walters.
A home equity loan can often close faster than a traditional first mortgage. In fact, it’s possible to close in just days. And depending on your needs, you can either receive your money in one lump sum or set it up as a home equity line of credit, which acts like a credit card in that you can draw money from it anytime there’s a need. You are charged interest only if and when you make a withdrawal.
Some home equity loans even come with interest-only payment options. You can choose to pay only the interest due, or pay the interest plus principal — whichever you like. This gives you flexibility and choice to pay toward your mortgage or put your money to use in other ways, as needed.
Broulliard says she decided to take out her loan from Quicken Loans over another lender because of their reputation for great customer service. “I never felt like my banker was selling me. He showed me that I was in a good position to refinance and get cash out and came up with a plan that was totally customized to help me start my own business,” she says. “He went out of his way to take good care of me.”
Her mortgage banker refinanced her into a 5-year adjustable rate mortgage and lowered her mortgage payment by around $600 a month — that’s $600 she’s putting away towards the start-up costs of her business. Within a year, she’ll have saved one-quarter of what she’ll need — that’s a lot faster than she had originally anticipated.
“Since choosing the right loan program is often far more important than shaving one-eighth percent off of the rate on the wrong program, Quicken Loans prides itself on the in-depth analysis done with each client’s situation to determine the optimal program and loan structure. Our home loan experts are trained to ask the right questions to match the right loan program with the client’s goals. In addition, a culture of client focus, coupled with world-class technology, means our mortgage bankers keep our clients informed at every step along the way,” says Walters.
This focus on client service has served Quicken Loans well, resulting in the highest client satisfaction score in the industry, which in turn has contributed to their growth. Quicken Loans closed nearly $18 billion in home loans in 2006. The company recently posted the strongest month in their 22-year history, closing more than $2 billion in home loans in a single month in March 2007, and repeating the record again in April 2007. This growth has strengthened the company’s position as the nation’s largest online retail mortgage lender.
Broulliard adds, “I feel like I’m making progress and that I don’t have to worry about where the money for my business is going to come from. My banker helped me see the light at the end of the tunnel and I’m much closer to opening the business than I ever thought possible!”
Quicken Loans can find the right loan to help you finance your dreams as well. Visit their Web site at www.quickenloans.com, fill out the online form and a home loan expert will call you within 24 hours to get the mortgage process started.
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