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Understanding Which Mortgage Loan is Right for You: An Interview with Whitney O'Meara of First Heritage Mortgage, LLC.

By Whitney O'Meara

Tell us a little bit about your company and the services you offer.

Founded in 1996, First Heritage Mortgage was designed to be the premier source of mortgage financing for customers of the builder and realtor community. From the outset, First Heritage's blend of best in class service combined with competitive rates and products has won the confidence of the company's referral partners and legions of satisfied borrowers. First Heritage is a direct lender which controls every aspect of the mortgage process from start to finish. Our borrowers' loans are all processed, underwritten and closed locally which enables a speedy and accurate delivery of our services, removing much of the stress from the process. At First Heritage Mortgage we offer virtually every mortgage loan program available in today's mortgage market.

What is one of the most important things for potential homeowners to know when they're starting to look at the different types of home loans?

Potential home owner's need to meet or talk with a loan officer to discuss the different types of loans available to them. Make sure you understand the loan terms completely and ask any questions you have.

Is there a common misconception about mortgages that you've seen first-time home buyers have?

Many first-time home buyers think you need at least 20% down to purchase a home but that is incorrect. There are many loan options available with minimal money required for down payment.

How should people approach trying to understand the types of loans that are available to them and deciding which one is the best fit?

Discussing this with your loan officer is the best option. Review the costs associated with each with option and payment and then review the pros and cons of each one. There are many questions I ask my customers to help them with this decision (how long do you see yourself in this home, which is more important lower monthly payment or lower cash out of pocket, what does you future income look like, etc.)

What are two or three of the most common types of loans that people apply for and the main benefit of each one?

The most common type of loan is a Conventional 30 Year Fixed which provides a fixed rate for the life of the loan and allows a variety of down payment options. A FHA 30 Year Fixed is also a popular choice for first time home buyers which has a fixed rate for the life of the loan and only requires 3.5% down. The FHA also has more lenient underwriting guidelines for credit and income. Another common financing option is the VA mortgage which is available to those who have served or are currently serving in our military. The VA will provide 100% financing with no mortgage insurance and a 30 year fixed rate.

What advice would you give to prospective home buyers who want a lot of flexibility with their mortgage?

This depends on what type of flexibility they are looking for in the mortgage. There are many loan options which allow for flexibility in payments (monthly, bi-weekly, weekly) to cut down on the interest paid over the life of the loan. There are also adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) which provide a lower rate for a fixed period of time that could change/adjust after the fixed period is over.

What's the best way for people to reach you and your company?

I can be reached via
Phone: 919-378-1532

Individual NMLS#191101
First Heritage Mortgage, LLC NMLS#865248 (

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