High Mortgage Approval in Northern Michigan Counties

SmartAsset, a New York financial technology company, recently released their second annual study on the Best Places to Get a Mortgage. Leelanau, Marquette, and Grand Traverse counties were just a few of the Northern Michigan counties to make the list.

The study determines the top markets by comparing the likelihood of mortgage approval by county, in addition to mortgage rates, average five-year borrowing costs, and property taxes. Grand Traverse County ranked fourth in Michigan, up from their rank of 75 in 2015. Leelanau County topped the list at No. 1 and Marquette County ranked third. See the full results here.

We talked with Martin Siklich, the branch manager at GSF Mortgage in Traverse City, about the study and why Northern Michigan is considered a good place to get a mortgage.

Why do you think several Northern Michigan counties placed in the top 10 best places to get a mortgage in Michigan, and what makes it easy to get a mortgage here?

“You can get a mortgage anywhere, but what makes it easier to get a mortgage here are comparable sales and home values. When the foreclosure rate was up a few years ago, home values went down in most places, but they stayed steady here in Northern Michigan because it’s a great destination to retire and to vacation. It’s easy to get a mortgage because of those steady home values.”

What is the average percent people put down on a house?

“Five percent is fairly common across the state, but it does depend on the area. Some people in Bloomfield Hills are putting down 50 percent on homes.”

Is the rate of foreclosure in those 3 counties lower than other counties in Michigan?

“I can’t say definitely because I’m not in foreclosure, but there is a smaller population here in Northern Michigan, and I haven’t seen as many foreclosures as I have in areas downstate.”

What kind of mortgage do people typically get in this area?

“VA Home Loans, conventional, USDA, and FHA are all very popular loans. A lot of people don’t know you can get a home for $0 down, and up here you can with a USDA loan.”

View the listing for the Mount Pleasant home pictured above here.

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