Published November 19, 2013
Volume 21, Number 11

United Mutual Real Estate Serves Buyers, Sellers, Borrowers, and Investors

United Mutual's offices are in Crossroads, at 5990 Stoneridge Drive.

By Nicole Zaro Stahl

United Mutual Real Estate is a boutique firm that leverages its expertise in both home sales and mortgage lending to structure the most beneficial transactions for its clients. On the property side, it has five veteran agents who are well acquainted with the housing market in Alameda and Contra Costa counties. On the lending side, it has three seasoned processing officers who guide buyers through the loan application process with detailed attention focused on meeting underwriting requirements.

Experience and flexibility are the hallmarks of United Mutual operations, according to Tony Maqdoor, broker and owner of the firm.

“When we list a home for sale, it’s important to price it realistically so it doesn’t sit on the market for 45 days,” says Maqdoor. Many of the properties the firm has listed this year have gone into contract within a week. “We also work with the sellers to help them get the bottom-line number they want from the transaction. If that means giving them a break on fees or commissions, we can do that to accommodate them, and get the deal done.”

The focus on the bottom line does not detract from the firm’s promotional activity. “We offer the same services—open houses, flyers, advertising, posting on Craigslist—as more traditional brand-name firms,” Maqdoor notes.

While the United Mutual lending team displays a similar flexibility, their focus is trained on satisfying underwriting criteria so the mortgage application will be approved and the transaction will move forward.

“We do not want to put a property we have listed into pending status unless we know the buyer can get financing,” he comments. Borrowing standards have tightened considerably, and the team does extensive due diligence to make sure the new requirements are met. For example, a review of a buyer’s financial information might reveal that he has been working at a second job for six months. “For that income to qualify, the job has to be held for two years. Knowing this prevents an unnecessary submission to the underwriters.”

By dealing with only a select handful of lending institutions,United Mutual loan agents have been able to build close relationships that help facilitate the execution of transactions, whether by restructuring the loan package or accelerating the timeframe to meet a seller’s needs.

“Because of the amount of business we do with these institutions, we can close escrow in 15 to 21 days,” says Maqdoor. “The lenders will typically accommodate us if we have to rush a file or waive a condition.” 

The broker is also confident in his team’s ability to secure competitive interest rates for mortgage applicants.

“We encourage our clients to shop around for rates. If anyone beats us, we’ll match or lower the fees. So far no one has come back with that request. There are not many companies that offer the same kinds of services we do,” he concludes.

The firm has had an office in Hacienda since 2009. Recently it moved into expanded quarters at 5990 Stoneridge Drive, Suite 100. Contact the office at (925) 223-8020. 


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