Viewpoints: Jeff Nieznay, Senior Loan Officer, Envoy Mortgage, Houston

by James McClister


Jeff Nieznay  is a senior loan officer with Envoy Mortgage working in Houston.

Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before. This week, we spoke with Jeff Nieznay, a senior loan officer with Envoy Mortgage. 

Houston Agent (HA): A recent article discussed the restrictions on lending and suggested that standards were looser for refinancing than for purchasing. Have you noticed this trend, and if so, what do you think is behind it?

Jeff Nieznay (JN): There’s no question that after the crash, a lot of the changes in the industry and incentives and government pressure was directed at keeping people in homes. A lot of the programs – for example, Fannie Mae having a product where appraisal isn’t an issue – were designed with that in mind, which is why you have so many options for refinancing, as opposed to buying a new home.

HA: How important is communication in the lending process?

JN: We as professionals sometimes forget what it’s like to be on the other side of the tracks. We are so accustomed to knowing the process and the flow of a transaction, we forget what it’s like to sit and wait for that call from your loan officer. It’s extremely important to keep up with communication for clients to have a good experience. My team will not only send emails throughout the week with changes and updates, but my staff calls everyone on the transaction once a week to keep them abreast of what’s going on. I can tell you from the purchase side, when you have a lender who’s openly communicating with the listing agent and keeping them in the loop, and if anything bad happens, it’s a lot easier to then negotiate with the seller to extend contracts, extend timeframes.

HA: What can real estate agents do to form better relationships with their lending partners?

JN: I’ve met hundreds of Realtors, and I remember one, to this day, that before I met with him the first time to discuss whether we can do business together, he provided my assistant a list of everything he expected out of the lender he worked with. To form a better relationship with your lender, agents should find what they expect out of that other party. Sit down and ask: What do I want from my lender; what do I expect out of my lender?

My second piece of advice would be to meet with your lender quarterly or semi-annually just to see how they are matching up with what you require out of your business partner. It should be a formal meeting where agents actively evaluate their lender, using the aforementioned list. No lender is going to be perfect, but an agent can help make that lender perfect for them.

And one quick don’t for agents is: don’t give limited completion timelines for purchases. I’ll get contracts that are written with seven days to complete. Never hand your lender a contract that only gives them a week or two to complete. Beforehand, call your lender and ask them how long it will take a specific contract to process.

Read More Related to This Post

Join the conversation

Oops! We could not locate your form.