In order to level the field in the negotiation of a home loan, borrowers need to have someone to represent them on the mortgage end of the deal, just as they have on the real estate side of the transaction.
In California, a licensed real estate agent owes fiduciary duties to the buyer or seller, whomever the agent represents. This is not the case on the financial side of the transaction.
In California, unqualified personnel, some with criminal records, flood the financial side of the real estate industry since virtually no licensing is required under the Department of Corporations. Unlike a licensed real estate agent who works for the consumer, a loan officer does not work for or represent the consumer; in other words, the consumer is on his or her own.
The easy fix is that the government should require that anyone directly involved with the borrower in the financial side of a real estate transaction be licensed in the same manner as a real estate agent, and that the licensed person represent the borrower regardless of who pays for the licensee's services.