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The Lesson I Learned from "The Associate" Week 2

by Robert Kunisch 26. February 2015

The Associate Presentations

Do you want to win in business? Then listen to what the client wants and deliver a clear and concise proposal to meet their needs. It’s a simple concept, but it’s often forgotten. Too frequently we want to tell the client what their needs are and how we are going to resolve them our way. This week, the Towson University Associate program reminded me to look at how 1st Mariner is responding to our customer and prospect needs.

In week two of the competition, team Synergy and team Eminence locked horns in an epic battle to increase the brand awareness of Baltimore-based B’more Organic. B’more Organic has a great product with enormous benefits for the consumer. Their challenges are typical of a young growing company.

The rules of the game state that the presenting company, B’more Organic, reveals the issue that the teams must resolve. B’more Organic selects the winner. We (1st Mariner) have to fire a person on the losing team.

Here comes the lesson learned. The 1st Mariner judges believed that team Eminence had the better presentation. B’more Organic, the client, thought otherwise and selected team Synergy as the winner. B’more Organic explained that team Synergy met their needs better than the other team. We fell into the trap of liking a presentation despite what the client wanted.

The winners from the night were B’more Organic and team Synergy, but also 1st Mariner Bank for being reminded of a valuable lesson: ideas may be great, but if they fall short of client expectations then you won’t walk away as the winner.

Next up is Merritt Athletic Clubs, a well-known and respected Maryland company. Their case is materially different than that of B’more Organic. I hope team Synergy and team Eminence take note.

Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta (FHLB)

by Charlie Maykrantz 25. February 2015

New Home

Are you a first-time buyer who is looking for assistance to help with down payment and closing costs? Do you know 1st Mariner Bank can offer you a program that can help provide funds to assist with your transaction? It’s called the Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta (FHLB) Affordable Housing Program. This program is offered in the following geographic areas; Alabama, Georgia, District of Columbia, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. If you are military or a veteran this program is available throughout the entire 50 state area. The programs below are subject to 80% of HUD median income adjusted for household size.

There are different types of products under the umbrella of FHLB Atlanta. The following are offered by 1st Mariner:

1) First-Time Homebuyer

This program allows a loan of up to $5,000 for the purchase of an owner-occupied property with a match ratio of 4 to 1. This means, in order to receive the entire amount of $5,000, a borrower must contribute $1,250 of their own funds, and the home must be a primary residence. The initial income determination is to be made by the originating lender.

2) The Community Partners

This is an assistance program for use by firefighters, educators, law enforcement officers, or health care workers that will provide $7,500 in assistance under the same ratio parameter of 4 to 1 (to get the full amount, the buyer’s minimum cash required is $1,875).

3) Foreclosure Recovery

A loan up to $15,000 for use of down payment and closing costs for purchase of an existing unit from an FHLB Atlanta members Real Estate Owned (REO) portfolio.

4) Veterans Purchase Product

This is a $7,500 loan for closing costs and down payment for purchase. There is no required borrower contribution for this product. This is for homebuyers who are currently serving or have served in any branch of the U.S. military or their unremarried surviving spouse.

5) Returning Veterans Purchase Product

A loan up to $10,000 to be used for down payment and closing costs for purchase. There is no required borrower contribution for this product. This is for homebuyers who are currently serving or have served in an overseas military intervention for any branch of the U.S. military or their unremarried surviving spouse.

These programs are offered by 1st Mariner Bank through the Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta and are not guaranteed, as availability is subject to guidelines as required by FHLB Atlanta. For more information please contact Charlie Maykrantz at cmaykrantz@1stmarinerbank.com or 410-735-2068.

The above programs are subject to change at any time and this does not constitute a guarantee on the part of 1st Mariner Bank as an obligation to offer these programs without the approval of the program administrator. All applicants must be qualified to purchase and participate in these programs per underwriting guidelines of both 1st Mariner and the program administrator.

If you found this article useful, be sure to check out these related articles:

Harford County Neighborhood Conservation Initiative

Howard County Settlement Down Payment Loan Program

Baltimore County Settlement Expense Loan Program (SELP)

Infographic: Is Getting a College Education Worth It?

by Sara Seeger 24. February 2015

For some time now, obtaining a college degree has been regarded as mandatory for success in many career paths. Many jobs require a college degree to even be considered. But as college costs are creeping higher and higher, many people are wondering if the ROI is still there. Between the years and years of student debt people obtain and the high unemployment rate for recent graduates, people are asking the question: is college still worth it?

Infographic: Is Getting a College Education Worth It?
If you found this infographic useful, be sure to check out these related articles:

Infographic: Are Maryland Private Schools Worth the Price Tag?

Has Anyone Seen My $200 Million?

The Bank of Mom and Dad: When to Shut It Down



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