First Mortgage Loan Application..Help!!

9 Replies

Looking to get a little advice here as I'm in the process of buying a 2-flat here in Chicago.  I recently filled out the loan application and there was a section that was titled "loan estimates" where it has Terms, Payments, Closing Costs, along with the closing cost details.  Much of it seems like costs I can't do much about but then there's a section that says "services you can shop for" and has a list of costs:

Services You Can Shop For $4,021

Survey $350

Title - 24 Month Chain of Title $250 

Title - Anti-Predatory Lending Database Fee $150

Title - Closing Indemnfication/Protection Letter Fee $75

Title - Email Fee $25 

Title - Endorsements $500

Title - Lender's Title Insurance $1,028 

Title - Settlement Fee $1,600 

Title - Title Insurance Services $3 

Title - Wire Fee $40 

Since this is my first mortgage, are the costs of these fees pretty similar everywhere?  Or can I save significant money by shopping around for 


Your loan estimate is just that, its a rough estimate of fees associated with your loan. The fees you can shop for that you listed are your title fees, you can choose your title company and each company has different fees. you can call and get estimates or you can ask your loan officer to provide you with 3 different companies and get estimates. When I do a loan estimate, its done on a worse case scenario because we don't have anything ordered yet, as we get in what is needed, fees are properly adjusted and your will sign off on a final closing disclosure 3 days prior to closing. The closing cost also vary between lenders so do your homework and call around for the best deal for you.

@Joe Mende Technically, those are services in many, states that you  can shop for. But in Chicago, not so much the case. You could try to negotiate the ability to choose those items, rather than the seller, but here, the seller chooses title and the title company will dictate the costs you see. Unfortunately, it won't be up to you or the lender. 

The title costs above do look a little high. Not sure you will need all those items in there (don't normally see survey in there with the title costs). What is the price of this property? How large of a loan? If your loan is a solid amount of $500k, then this is probably pretty accurate. 

Chicago is an expensive market. However to simplify things for you, most fees are going to be very similar, regardless of the lender, with the exception of origination fees and points. 

And I know how people love talking about nailing down rates and costs on here. My opinion differs a bit because the vast majority of this business is not great at originating loans. There is an absolute value with being 100% reliable and accountable. Even at the expense of slightly higher costs. So if you have a lender that you trust, I would stick with them. 

Originally posted by @Elaine Capobianco :


Your loan estimate is just that, its a rough estimate of fees associated with your loan. The fees you can shop for that you listed are your title fees, you can choose your title company and each company has different fees. you can call and get estimates or you can ask your loan officer to provide you with 3 different companies and get estimates. When I do a loan estimate, its done on a worse case scenario because we don't have anything ordered yet, as we get in what is needed, fees are properly adjusted and your will sign off on a final closing disclosure 3 days prior to closing. The closing cost also vary between lenders so do your homework and call around for the best deal for you.

So even after signing this loan application that details the costs, they can change between now and closing?

Originally posted by @Jeff Dulla :

@Joe Mende Technically, those are services in many, states that you  can shop for. But in Chicago, not so much the case. You could try to negotiate the ability to choose those items, rather than the seller, but here, the seller chooses title and the title company will dictate the costs you see. Unfortunately, it won't be up to you or the lender. 

The title costs above do look a little high. Not sure you will need all those items in there (don't normally see survey in there with the title costs). What is the price of this property? How large of a loan? If your loan is a solid amount of $500k, then this is probably pretty accurate. 

Chicago is an expensive market. However to simplify things for you, most fees are going to be very similar, regardless of the lender, with the exception of origination fees and points. 

And I know how people love talking about nailing down rates and costs on here. My opinion differs a bit because the vast majority of this business is not great at originating loans. There is an absolute value with being 100% reliable and accountable. Even at the expense of slightly higher costs. So if you have a lender that you trust, I would stick with them. 

Thanks for your input.  The house was 435k and we put down 20% so the loan amount is 385k.  I was under the assumption that since it said "services you can shop for", that these title fees were from the lender's title insurance company they typically use. 

Your initial loan estimate that comes in your disclosure package is just a rough estimate of your loan fees, that's why its called an estimate. Until the lender orders title, appraisal, you provide your home owners insurance, taxes, etc...they don't know the exact fees. Once the lender has all documents, usually the fees are adjusted accordingly and you are updated. You can get estimates from different title companies, and home owners insurance companies to shop for the best rates and prices and provide them at the application process to assure your estimate is Fairly accurate.

@Joe Mende yes - they probably were quoted from the title company the lender prefers. They seem a little high. Is it Proper Title?

@Joe Mende Seller pick the title company so you don't have choice. This is just an estimate from your lender, when the have invoice from title company you will have right figures at that time. Survey is optional .

@Jeff Dulla - is right that seller choose the title company in IL - But you can hire your own.  While it is customary for 1 title company to handle the transaction it is not required.  The issue is getting your own title company is usually more expensive than slitting the costs with the seller. 

When my clients are buying I assume $1600 in origination fees, $150 in recording fees and $3,300 in title fees. To get these numbers I use he average of all my closings for the previous year. Plus you pay transfer taxes. You should not be paying for the survey unless it is bank owned and that listed on the MLS

I second all that the above pros brought to light.  My recommendation is to use a local lender in Chicago that knows the ins and outs of this market and can be more specific with the costs involved.

Join the Largest Real Estate Investing Community

Basic membership is free, forever.

By signing up, you indicate that you agree to the BiggerPockets Terms & Conditions.