Roof ove r
your hea d
trio of services
LendingTree®. Great rates for Costco mem-
bers, savings on closing costs and added-value
incentives are the hallmarks of these pro-
grams. Read on for the recent experiences of She learned that it would be easier and less process of securing a loan so unpleasant and
two very satisfied members. expensive to fund the purchase of a larger sin- time consuming that he washed his hands of
gle-family home thana smaller town house. helping her. If she wanted a new loan, it
By David Wight
COSTCO MEMBERS buying, selling, financing or refinancing homes, or seeking home
equity loans, have taken advantage of a trio
of housing-oriented services provided by
BRAND X PICTURES
The first-time buyer Ultimately the mortgage process went would be her project alone.
Sara Van Doren spoke to me from her well, and closing was well organized and pro- “Right away I was worried about the
home in Kuma, Idaho—an eight-year-old, fessionallysupportedbythelender. amount of time this would take,” recalls
three-bedroom, two-bath house she bought Van Doren points out the added incen- Slaughter, a busy mom and computer indus-
last summer using Lending Tree’s real estate tives of using Lending Tree. “As I looked try professional, who started the loan shop-
agent and mortgage services. around, Costco was the only company that ping process by noting home equity rates in
Van Doren had decided that paying paid me to use their services,” she reports. TV ads and with local lenders.
monthly rent wasa waste—$500 a monththat “Through a promotion, I got Costco Cash “But then, because I have always loved
she’d never see again. A house could be a long- cards back from Lending Tree’s mortgage and Costco, I thought I’d check out what Costco
term investment for her, but she doubted she real estate agent programs totaling $800. I might have,” she continues. “I found the
could qualify for a mortgage, being only 24 also qualified for a substantial rebate on the Lending Tree brochure in that area with all the
years old and working two part-time jobs. real estate agent commission.” service brochures near the store exit.
Fortunately one of the jobs was at a local “It was such a wonderful experience, so
Costco warehouse, where she wasintroduced Converting an old loan very fast and so easy. They qualified me
to the Lending Tree services. Home equity financing is the other pro- immediately, and I couldn’t believe how fast
LendingTree’s Website(clickon“Services” gram in the LendingTree trio, and Costco that e-mail came back with four different
on costco.com) features a help center loaded member Sally Slaughter of Libertyville, Illinois, lenders listed. I talked to them and quickly
with reference topics, and it became a valu- had need of that service last summer. narrowed it down to the one I went with. I did
able resource for the complex process of buy- She was looking for ways to better control everything online, and they sent documents
ing a house. monthly expenses, and was immediately to me overnight.
“I first needed to determine if I could buy alarmed by an unmanageable interest-only “My main priorities—ease of doing busi-
a house,” says Van Doren, “and when I was loan.“Itkept goingup and up,”says Slaughter. ness and competitive rates—had been met.
told that I actually did qualify, I started look- Converting that loan to a home equity On top of that, I also received a $200 Costco
ingfor ahouse that fit my financialneeds.” loan with a fixed interest rate seemed the Cash card from LendingTree just for using
Lending Tree put her in touch with three thing to do, but her husband had found the the service.” C
real estate agents in her area. She selected one,
and then the work began on searching for the
right house. Personal Service of the Month
The mortgage program got Van Doren
offers from three lenders. She picked one in
Colorado with the best offer, after verifying
that the rates quoted were better than the
rates and closing costs offered by some local
“Being a first-time buyer, there are different financing options depending on the type
of house you want to buy,” recalls Van Doren.
ADDITIONAL SAVINGS are available (normally $200) from Lending Tree
through Lending Tree’s real estate after closing.
agent services program during April. For more information, call toll-free
Executive Members receive a $400 1-888-290-0290 or visit costco.com,
Costco Cash card (normally $300); click on “Services,” then “Real Estate
Business and Gold Star members Agent Services.” Mention or enter
receive a $300 Costco Cash card reservation code 407-27.