Ethical 30-year fixed co-op mortgage in NYC?
May 20, 2014 6:04 AM   Subscribe

NYC MortgageFilter. We want an affordable 30 yr fixed 80% LTV co-op loan that underwrites quickly - but! With either ethical considerations or portfolio from a local lender. Need reccs. for lenders and especially loan officers please; or really savvy NYC mortgage brokers.

I'd like to display some ethics about borrowing money. Rather than just hand many tens of thousands in interest and fees to Citi/Chase etc, or get a mortgage with someone who will just sell it to one of the faceless vampire squids, I'd like a portfolio loan or to get one from a local bank that is somewhat ethical.

Please only give advice if you're NYC real estate savvy, as this is a special market.


We're interested in 30-year fixed rate co-op loans, with 80% financing in the mid to high $200 ks (so no jumbo!). We have excellent credit.

Does anyone know

i) whether there are portfolio loans  from entities with a good customer service record that can offer competitive rates to the other lenders; I'd like to know who I'm dealing with over the next 30 years.

ii) I'm also interested if a lender has a particular ethical stance. If there are credit unions that support local communities, for example.

The problem is as our (excellent) mortgage broker puts it

"A lot of the credit unions don't lend on coops. There are some local and regional portfolio banks who do lend on coops but have a reduced loan to value and portfolio lenders aren't typically competitive on the 30yr fixed…..I do think the local lenders would have a more customer-orientated approach to servicing the mortgage but I don't see them as being more beneficial than the big banks in terms of rates. The other downside to portfolio lenders is that they tend to be very slow underwriting a loan. "

Please recommend both institutions and especially loan officers you have had personal experience with who are familiar with the NYC market, and have quickly underwrote loans and fulfilled the criteria above.

Alternatively if you had a super engaged mortgage broker who knew about this stuff. Thanks hivemind!
posted by lalochezia to Work & Money (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I don't want to trample your good intentions, but there is nothing you can do to stop your mortgage being sold. You can sign up with the most ethical, green, fairy-dust-encrusted local lender and still fully expect your loan will be sold multiple times in the first 10 years and end up with some big evil conglomerate anyway.

Unless a credit union won't loan on a Co-Op, that might be your best bet as they are unlikely to sell your mortgage but will be slower to close.
posted by DarlingBri at 6:53 AM on May 20, 2014 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Part of the trick is asking the co-op which lenders they are approved for and working from there. The situation with NYC co-ops is different than with condos and SFHs-- banks evaluate the co-op for whether they are worthy of issuing mortgages first, and then you choose those lenders who have approved your co-op. Going through another lender could take more time and/or give you a higher interest rate. My advice would be to handle this on a case-by-case basis and see which lender on the co-op's approved lender list is the one you are most comfortable dealing with.
posted by deanc at 7:05 AM on May 20, 2014

+1 on the advice from deanc above. Even if a lender does co-op loans, they might not deal with the particular place you're interested in. My experience is with a co-op apartment in DC where only three lenders were approved to lend, only two of which would return phone calls, and only one was actually interested in lending. Hopefully you have more choice, but this one of the the disadvantages of a co-op.
posted by exogenous at 7:32 AM on May 20, 2014

Selling mortgages allows much cheaper rates by diversifying risk across individual real estate markets. Any firm, particularly small bank, that does not do this, is going to be at catastrophic risk towards idiosyncratic shocks, and should be avoided.
posted by jjmoney at 11:03 AM on May 20, 2014

Response by poster: deanc has good advice, digging up leads on streeteasy allows us to find out where previous people in the co-op have bought from.

keep the advice coming people!
posted by lalochezia at 9:08 PM on May 20, 2014

Response by poster: FYI we went with United Nations Federal Credit Union; things are appearing to go well.

You can join UNFCU if you become a member of UNA.
posted by lalochezia at 5:31 AM on June 13, 2014 [1 favorite]

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