With Memorial Day coming up on Monday, we wanted to take time to recognize some of the mortgage professionals at Guardian Mortgage that have served our nation. What you may not realize is that the values instilled by military service translate easily to mortgage lending. Integrity, service, and respect are characteristics instilled in all branches of our nation’s armed forces, and you can find them in the staff at Guardian Direct as well.
So thank you, Guardian Direct, for giving us a chance to shine a light on the former servicemembers on your staff. To find out more about these amazing men and women that make up this month’s Guardian Angels, read on for our Q&A with Jeff Guthrie, Vice President of Sales at Guardian Direct.
CandysDirt.com: The path of a career can be different for everyone. For most of you at Guardian Direct, the journey began in the military. How did Guardian Direct Loan Officers find their way from the military into the mortgage industry?
Jeff Guthrie: The military teaches the value of integrity, service, and respect. The mortgage industry is a great fit for retired servicemembers working at Guardian Direct because we use these same traits to successfully help homebuyers realize the American Dream.
CD: How does a military background help Guardian Direct serve the needs of your customers better than others in the mortgage business?
JG: Attention to detail, mission completion, problem solving, following rules, and maintaining regulations are taught from the first day of boot camp and reinforced throughout military service. These are the building blocks of every servicemember. And, if asked, most customers would place these attributes at the top of their list when selecting a loan officer as well. At Guardian Direct, our loan officers tap into this training to help us serve our customers.
CD: What traditions did you begin with your families while you were in the military to help keep you connected and grounded, and which of these have you continued with your families since returning to civilian life?
JG: Military families often spend time apart. Therefore, spending time together at home enjoying the simple everyday tasks is something we did not take for granted. Regardless of where we are today, coming together with family is the best part of any tradition.
CD: How do you and your families celebrate Memorial Day?
JG: We see Memorial Day as a day to honor those who sacrificed their lives for our freedom—not just for freedom in America, but for our freedom. Enjoying our freedom with our families is one way we honor those who fought for us. We enjoy firing up the grill and spending time together. Most of us also take the time to teach our children to honor the men and women who have fallen in defense of our great nation by taking them to the Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery for the annual ceremony.
CD: 2015 is being called “The Year of the Return of the First-Time Homebuyer.” What advice do you offer any potential first-time homebuyers, specifically those with a military background?
JG: It is a great time to purchase, but homebuyers should be sure that they surround themselves with a team of people who have their best interest at heart. The Realtor and loan officer are integral to the process. The VA mortgage is one of the most misunderstood benefits servicemembers have. This is why it is important for homebuyers with a military background to find an actual VA loan specialist to best utilize what they have earned.
CD: What drives you to do what you do every day?
JG: We feel that it is our duty to assist our brothers and sisters in arms. The purchase of a house allows a sense of permanence that they gave up in order to serve their country. Helping them achieve this sense of “home” again is a powerful motivator.