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    I AM A WORK AT HOME MOM AND PROUD OF IT!
    By Diane St. James, Copyright 2003/All Rights Reserved
     
    I am a WAHM and proud of it! After all it took me long enough to
    get here!
     
    I started a website while still commuting 100+ miles/day to my
    mortgage underwriting job near Philadelphia, PA. I came up with the
    idea nearly 5 years ago out of a desire to help people understand
    mortgages better and guide them as to the best type for them. Let me
    back up a little. I have spent the last 10 of my 22 years in the
    mortgage business as an underwriter. What is an underwriter? To put
    it plain and simple, it is the person who approves or declines
    <gulp> your mortgage.
     
    Through the years I've seen too many people get into a mortgage that
    wasn't right for them, just because someone talked them into it. Also
    I've seen people paying more in mortgage points or closing costs than
    they really should have. By the time I got a file, it was just my job
    to make a decision on the loan. It had always been too late for me to
    tell the borrowers this wasn't really the best thing for them.
     
    So I thought about what I could do to help people outside of my day
    job and turned to the Internet. I set up my unique mortgage
    consulting website to be 'different' from the other mortgage websites
    out there in cyberspace. People who come to my site looking for
    mortgage rates, won't find any! I am not a mortgage broker, (even
    though there are a few links on my site for those wanting to check
    out mortgages). I started out offering live on line consultations and
    then added personalized written reports since people have such busy
    lives! A quick questionnaire and they'd have their answers.
     
    My day job was keeping me swamped though, and it was to the point
    where I was constantly bringing work home evenings and weekends.
    Weeks turned into months, and months into over a year of so much
    work, my poor girls were forgetting my name!! Not really, but they
    might as well have. I worked so much, and my website suffered for it,
    not to mention my family! Talk about your guilt trips! The sad part
    is, my children were growing up before my very eyes. How many
    times do we all say that? At that point in time when my oldest turned
    12 I realized she was going to be a teenager soon and where had I
    been?? Stuck with my face in yet another loan file.
     
    So three years ago after I had been working in an office environment
    most of the last 22 years, and doing that long commute for 2 years,
    in order to make the big bucks (and make it I did), I informed my
    boss that I was offering to do my job at home. After all I had a
    computer, phone and fax machine and my brain...what else did I
    need? She turned me down of course, which I could have predicted.
    So, what did I do? I didn't logically say "Just thought I'd ask", and
    go back to my desk. I gave my 2 weeks notice and never thought twice
    when I walked out the door 2 weeks later. Luckily I have a husband
    who supported my decision.
     
    People thought I was crazy since I didn't have another job waiting
    for me but I was determined to make family my priority and be there
    for my girls. At least this way I will have more memories of the last
    years of their childhood.
     
    So what happened? I'm doing great! I picked up some work doing post
    closing audits part-time in the first few months. Then that first
    winter I wrote my first e-book How to Get a Mortgage; filled with
    vital tips to save borrowers headaches and money! I publish a
    great mortgage e-zine called Diane's Mortgage Tips + Other
    Tidbits and have just under 5000 subscribers now. I've also expanded
    my website services to include telephone and email consultation,
    and have added helpful web pages like First Time Homebuyer
    Programs, Real Estate Agents and Lenders Listings, and a full page
    for Work at Home Resources since I believe in it so much! Oh, I
    almost forgot to mention. Remember how I wasn't allowed to
    underwrite at home? Within 7 months of ending my long
    commute I was back to underwriting, but this time at home!
    I've been a busy WAH Mom!

    My girls? Well, my older daughter is now 15 and heavily involved in
    dance and loves the fact that I can be there to watch when parents
    can visit. And my youngest has been on a softball team the last three
    years when before that I would not have been home in time to take her
    to any of her practices! When either of my kids are sick, they know
    they can stay in bed and have Mom wait on them hand and foot, then
    slip out to 'work' in the room next door. I actually can volunteer at
    their schools once in a while and dinner is never after 7:00 pm anymore!

     
    Looking back, I know this sounds so cliché but I honestly can say the
    only regret I have is not having done this 10 years ago.
     

    _________________

     

    Diane St. James is a mortgage professional with over 23 years
    experience. Her website http://www.abcmortgage.net exists to help
    educate people about the mortgage world. She is the author of 2
    e-books, and has been quoted in the WALL STREET JOURNAL,
    on MSN.com, appeared on national cable new television CNBC, and was featured on a Cover Story for USA Today newspapers.

 

     
     
     
     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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