When it comes time to borrow, most Americans look to their family and friends for advice, according to a recent survey by the Mortgage Bankers Assn. of America.
Recommendations from friends and family members count more than newspapers or other third-party resources when consumers gather home buying information, the survey found. The second biggest influence: personal experience.
"Borrower shopping patterns are clearly influenced by relationships, whether through experience or cultural factors," said Douglas Duncan, the association's director of research.
The Internet was a "small source of information" among borrowers' decision-making, the survey found, but nearly two-thirds indicated they would probably use the Net in the future.
More than half of the surveyed borrowers contacted three or more mortgage providers, but 52% said they acquired their loans from the first provider they contacted.
Nearly 60% said they were "very satisfied" with their lender, but fewer than one-third said they would "definitely" choose the same lender again.