Things I would like to scream into the phone

Anthropologie now has a bridal collection.  Would it be tacky if I were to wear a wedding gown to the office?  My married girlfriends are all now planning vow renewals, while my single girlfriends are browsing the collection just so they’ll be ready when the big day comes.  Ah, the waiting game.

And speaking of waiting…

I’d like to fill you in on a little behind the scenes scenario I’ve seen unfold over and over while working for the Bosses.  It revolves around interest rates, which I know – so boring right? – but actually translates into people losing money – which could mean less money in your bank account to buy that new Anthro wedding gown – so listen up!

Even if you are like me and don’t understand anything about the mortgage industry, you surely know that interest rates have been historically low in the past couple of years.  While they have been low, they still fluctuate each day.  I know this is already super dull….here –


Look at those sleeves!?  Pitter patters my heart!  Okay – back to interest rates!

So here’s how the money losing comes into play.  Let’s say you call my sweet Bosses one day to discuss refinancing your cute little bungalow because you’ve seen ads saying that interest rates are low.  Here is what would happen. 

After your phone conversation, my Boss would send you an e-mail that breaks down every single number – of course it would show what you could expect your new mortgage payment to be, but also he would compare different options, and even show you which month you would break even considering closing costs.  And everything he would send you would be based on the interest rates available to us on that specific day.

Now, it is totally possible that my Boss will show you the numbers, and you’d see that you would save 37 cents a month.  In those cases, you’d be told straight up – “This doesn’t make sense for you.  We really appreciate that you called though.” 

But in a lot of cases, the numbers are sent over, and you see something like this – “Hey! I can save two hundred bucks a month, and recoup my closing costs in under a year – thus saving big bucks in years to come.”  =

Of course, because you are savvy, you are going to want a little while to look over all this, ask him questions, and think about what you are going to do with your savings.   

Now this is where things get tricky.  I have seen people wait up to three months to call us back.  Remember how I said interest rates fluctuate?  Well, three months is plenty of time for rates to move so much that it turns your great savings into the 37 cent savings mentioned earlier.  I have heard my Bosses have to tell people kindly that it actually is too late.

Listen up.  Several years ago, I was considering buying a new dining room table from World Market.  It was a major purchase for me, and while I was in the store I had to decide how many chairs I wanted to go along with the table.  Part of me wanted to just buy four chairs, and save up for a few months before buying the remaining two.  I mentioned this to the sales person.  And you know what the sales person told me?  “Well, this piece is going to be discontinued, and I can’t guarantee those chairs will be here tomorrow.”

I was shocked!  “I’ll take all of them!” I declared, determined I would not lose the furniture I’d been eyeing for so long.  That was five years ago.  Here is a picture of my dining room table – taken from World Market’s website –today…

That’s right!  Not discontinued after all!

I tell you this to show that it is very tempting for me to distrust anyone who says that an offer is only good for so long.  I firmly believe that the sales person at World Market was deceiving me, and will probably be struck by lightning soon if he hasn’t already.  But here’s the thing. 

My Bosses, as great as they are, do not control interest rates.  Who does?  I have no clue – but I know it’s not James Beaver or Chad Helmcamp.  And being the gentlemen they are, they don’t bully people into refinancing their homes.  They give advice if asked, they break down all the numbers and explain everything, but the last thing they are is pushy. 

Sometimes I almost wish they were though!  When I overhear conversations in which someone has waited too long, I am tempted to grab the phone and scream “Why didn’t you just go ahead and sign the papers!?”  And it makes me want to grab the phone each time a new client calls and scream “Don’t wait!  These rates don’t last forever!”  Alas, neither Boss has requested my assistance in this, so for now I will relay my messages here.

If you are quoted a great rate and it makes sense for you to refinance your home or buy a new one, go ahead and sign the papers and lock the rate.  Even if you do not own a home now and don’t plan on buying for a few years, remember everything I’ve said here.  I have seen people lose out on great rates because they simply wait too long. 

Remember what is at stake, people…beautiful, beautiful clothes that await your purchase.  Or a fat 401K, whatever floats your boat. 

I’ve got to stop typing now…this veil is getting tangled in my keyboard.