Your Mortgage Application May Trigger Competing Offers

Your Mortgage Application May Trigger Competing Offers



Your Mortgage Application May Trigger Competing Offers
If you​ apply for a​ mortgage,​ your inbox,​ answering machine,​ and mailbox may fill up quickly with competing offers from other mortgage companies .​
It’s not that the​ company you​ applied to​ is​ selling or​ sharing your information .​
Rather,​ it’s that creditors – including mortgage companies – are taking advantage of​ a​ federal law that allows them to​ identify potential customers for the​ products they offer,​ and then market to​ them .​
The Federal Trade Commission,​ the​ nation’s consumer protection agency,​ wants you​ to​ know why your application for a​ mortgage may trigger competing offers,​ how you​ can use them to​ your benefit,​ and how to​ stop getting them if​ that’s your choice.
The unsolicited calls,​ emails,​ and letters about competing offers often are called prescreened or​ pre-approved offers of​ credit .​
They are based on​ information in​ your credit report that suggests you​ meet criteria set by the​ creditor making the​ offer – for example,​ you​ live in​ a​ certain zip code,​ you​ have a​ certain number of​ credit cards,​ or​ you​ have a​ certain credit score .​
Credit bureaus and other consumer reporting companies sell lists of​ consumers who meet the​ criteria to​ insurance companies,​ lenders,​ and other creditors .​
When you​ apply for a​ mortgage,​ the​ lender usually gets a​ copy of​ your credit report .​
At that point,​ an​ inquiry appears on​ your report showing that the​ lender has looked at​ it .​
The inquiry indicates you’re in​ the​ market for a​ loan .​
That’s why mortgage companies buy lists of​ consumers who have a​ recent inquiry from a​ mortgage company on​ their credit report .​
Federal law allows this practice if​ the​ offer of​ credit meets certain legal requirements .​
Clearly,​ some mortgage companies benefit from the​ practice .​
Consumers can benefit,​ too: prescreened offers can highlight other available products and make it​ easier to​ compare costs while you​ carefully check out the​ terms and conditions of​ any offers you​ might consider .​
Still,​ some people may prefer not to​ receive prescreened offers of​ credit and insurance at​ all .​
Here’s how to​ stop them:
Call 1-888-5-OPTOUT (1-888-567-8688) and you​ will be asked to​ provide certain personal information,​ including your home telephone number,​ name,​ Social Security number,​ and date of​ birth .​
The information you​ provide is​ confidential,​ and will be used only to​ process your request to​ opt out .​
Opting out of​ prescreened offers does not affect your ability to​ apply for credit or​ to​ get it .​
Your opt out request will be processed within five days,​ but it​ may take up to​ 60 days before the​ prescreened offers stop coming .​
If you​ have a​ joint mortgage,​ both parties need to​ opt out to​ stop the​ prescreened offers .​
If or​ when you​ want to​ opt back in,​ use the​ same telephone number.
Put your phone number on​ the​ federal government’s National Do Not Call Registry to​ reduce the​ telemarketing calls you​ get at​ home .​
To register your phone number or​ to​ get information about the​ registry call 1-888-382-1222 from the​ phone number you​ want to​ register .​
You will get fewer telemarketing calls within 31 days of​ registering your number .​
Your number stays on​ the​ registry for five years,​ until it​ is​ disconnected,​ or​ until you​ take it​ off the​ registry.
Many companies use other tools to​ identify marketing prospects,​ and that the​ Do Not Call Registry won’t shield you​ from all telemarketers – for example,​ those with which you​ have a​ business relationship .​
Even if​ you​ opt out of​ prescreened offers and put your number on​ the​ National Do Not Call Registry,​ you​ can expect some unsolicited offers.




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