Industry NewsMortgage

Are real estate fees bloated?

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Mortgage fees are bloated, difficult to compare and full of undisclosed mark-ups on third-party products, according to a new analysis from Consumer Reports, the respected consumer advocacy magazine. Consumers can shop for the best mortgage by comparing such factors as interest rates, points and annual percentage rates (APRs). But they can't comparison shop on the basis of closing costs, the magazine stated in the "Bloated mortgage costs" section of its report. "Because they include myriad charges for loan origination, processing, and so on, they are almost impossible to compare from lender to lender and often catch borrowers by surprise just days before they must finalize one of life's major purchases," the authors wrote. Reports such as this one encourage borrowers to shop around for loans and to ask more questions when they obtain a mortgage. They also arm borrowers with information they otherwise wouldn't be offered and wouldn't know to ask about. Are mortgage costs bloated? Tell ...