In Palo Alto, CA since 1993. University Investments manages what will likely be the largest financial investment you will ever make -- your home. Our services begin as a mortgage broker, shopping the market to find the best loan package for your specific needs and abilities. Where we differ is in the service, and the relationship. Long after your loan has closed, University Investments continues to work with you, analyzing your loan, tracking the market, and notifying you if conditions are ripe for a refinance or new mortgage terms. We remain at your service as a reference when you have questions about your loan or the mortgage market in general.


Steps To Take

University Investments is more than just a mortgage loan company. We're an investment tracking company. We offer top notch service on your home loan, then track both your satisfaction with the process and your investment. Many of our customers call for financial advice regarding their mortgage and general finances as they relate to their mortgage. As part of our service, we contact you periodically if we feel there are programs or actions that would save you money.

University Investments specializes in service. We treat your home loan as the largest single purchase you will likely make in your life. University Investments offers the following services to all our customers and friends:

  • Step One


    We'll help you determine what's important for the pre-qualification process and help you get the information you need. University Investments will assess your current financial situation and long-term goals. We'll help with credit check and income verification. We take the time to explain the loan process thoroughly.

  • Step Two

    Loan Selection

    We'll find the best program at the best rates possible for your needs. We know the "ins and outs" of each program to help you meet loan requirements easily. University Investments works with a large number of lenders to find the best mortgage product.

  • Step Three

    Loan Approval

    Most loans come back with conditions for approval. We'll help you meet those conditions or negotiate for you, if possible. University Investments will help you meet conditions for approval of your loan. We'll assist you with gathering of documents (pay stubs, income statements) and completing the application form.

  • Step Four

    Follow Up

    Our product is not the loan itself, it's the way you feel about the loan you've received. We follow up with you to ensure you are satisfied and secure with your mortgage. This follow up continues for years down the road as we constantly monitor your situation to see if you might be able to benefit from a different loan.

  • Step Five


    We're more than happy to answer questions for you. Thinking of refinancing? Considering a new home? Questions about how other financial activities will affect future loans? We're there for you whenever you need us.

Types of Loans

30 Year Fixed Mortgage Payments are fixed for 360 months. The interest rate is fixed and unchanged throughout the life of the loan.
15 Year Fixed Mortgage Payments are fixed for 180 months. The interest rate is fixed and unchanged throughout the life of the loan.
10/1 Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) This is a 30 year loan. Payments are fixed for the first ten years (120 Payments). After 10 years, the loan automatically converts to a 1 year ARM for the remaining term.
7/1 Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) This is a 30 year loan. Payments are fixed for the first seven years (84 Payments). After 7 years, the loan automatically converts to a 1 year ARM for the remaining term.
5/1 Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) This is a 30 year loan. Payments are fixed for the first five years (60 Payments). After 5 years, the loan automatically converts to a 1 year ARM for the remaining term.
3/1 Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) This is a 30 year loan. Payments are fixed for the first three years (36 Payments). After 3 years, the loan automatically converts to a 1 year ARM for the remaining term.
1 Year Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) This is a 30 year loan. Payments are set annually and can change once every twelve months. The interest rate is based on an index plus a fixed margin.
6 Month Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) This is a 30 year loan. Payments are set semi-annually and can change once every six months. The interest rate is based on an index (Treasury Bill) plus a fixed margin.
11th District Cost of Funds Index (COFI) This is typically a 30 year loan. Some lenders even have a 40 year loan program. Payments are set monthly and can change once a month. The interest rate is based on an index (11th District COFI) plus a fixed margin.

Buying Tips



The right of the mortgagee (lender) to demand the immediate repayment of the mortgage loan balance upon the default of the mortgagor (borrower), or by using the right vested in the Due-on-Sale Clause.

Adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)

Is a mortgage in which the interest rate is adjusted periodically based on a preselected index. Also sometimes known as the re negotiable rate mortgage, the variable rate mortgage or the Canadian rollover mortgage.

Adjustment interval

On an adjustable rate mortgage, the time between changes in the interest rate and/or monthly payment, typically one, three or five years, depending on the index.


Means loan payment by equal periodic payment calculated to pay off the debt at the end of a fixed period, including accrued interest on the outstanding balance.

Annual percentage rate (A.P.R.)

Is an interest rate reflecting the cost of a mortgage as a yearly rate. This rate is likely to be higher than the stated note rate or advertised rate on the mortgage, because it takes into account points and other credit cost. The APR allows homebuyers to compare different types of mortgages based on the annual cost for each loan.


An estimate of the value of property, made by a qualified professional called an "appraiser".


A local tax levied against a property for a specific purpose, such as a sewer or streetlights.


The agreement between buyer and seller where the buyer takes over the payments on an existing mortgage from the seller. Assuming a loan can usually save the buyer money since this is an existing mortgage debt, unlike a new mortgage where closing cost and new, probably higher, market-rate interest charges will apply.

Balloon (payment) mortgage

Usually a short-term fixed-rate loan which involves small payments for a certain period of time and one large payment for the remaining amount of the principal at a time specified in the contract.

Blanket Mortgage

A mortgage covering at least two pieces of real estate as security for the same mortgage.

Borrower (Mortgagor)

One who applies for and receives a loan in the form of a mortgage with the intention of repaying the loan in full


An individual in the business of assisting in arranging funding or negotiating contracts for a client buy who does not loan the money himself. Brokers usually charge a fee or receive a commission for their services.


When the lender and/or the homebuilder subsidized the mortgage by lowering the interest rate during the first few years of the loan. While the payments are initially low, they will increase when the subsidy expires.

Cash Flow

The amount of cash derived over a certain period of time from an income-producing property. The cash flow should be large enough to pay the expenses of the income producing property (mortgage payment, maintenance, utilities, etc.)

Caps (interest)

Consumer safeguards that limit the amount the interest rate on an adjustable rate mortgage may change per year and/or the life of the loan.

Caps (payment)

Consumer safeguards that limit the amount monthly payments on an adjustable rate mortgage may change.

Certificate of Eligibility

The document given to qualified veterans which entitles them to VA guaranteed loans for homes, business, and mobile homes. Certificates of eligibility may be obtained by sending DD-214 (Separation Paper) to the local VA office with VA form 1880 (request for Certificate of Eligibility)

Certificate of Reasonable Value (CRV)

An appraisal issued by the Veterans Administration showing the property's current market value

Certificate of Veteran Status

The document given to veterans or reservists who have served 90 days of continuous active duty (including training time) It may be obtained by sending DD 214 to the local VA office with form 26-8261a (request for certificate of veteran status. This document enables veterans to obtain lower down payments on certain FHA insured loans).


The meeting between the buyer, seller and lender or their agents where the property and funds legally change hands. Also called settlement. Closing costs usually include an origination fee, discount points, appraisal fee, title search and insurance, survey, taxes, deed recording fee, credit report charge and other costs assessed at settlement. The costs of closing usually are about 3 percent to 6 percent of the mortgage amount.


A promise by a lender to make a loan on specific terms or conditions to a borrower or builder. A promise by an investor to purchase mortgages from a lender with specific terms or conditions. An agreement, often in writing, between a lender and a borrower to loan money at a future date subject to the completion of paperwork or compliance with stated conditions.

Construction Loan

A short term interim loan to pay for the construction of buildings or homes. These are usually designed to provide periodic disbursements to the builder as he progresses.

Contract Sale or Deed

A contract between purchaser and a seller of real estate to convey title after certain conditions have been met. It is a form of installment sale.

Conventional loan

A mortgage not insured by FHA or guaranteed by the VA.

Credit Report

A report documenting the credit history and current status of a borrower's credit standing.

Debt-to-Income Ratio

The ratio expressed as a percentage, which results when a borrower's monthly payment obligation on long-term debts is divided by his or her gross monthly income. See housing expenses-to-income ratio.

Deed of Trust

In many states, this document is used in place of a mortgage to secure the payment of a note.


Failure to meet legal obligations in a contract, specifically, failure to make the monthly payments on a mortgage.

Deferred Interest

When a mortgage is written with a monthly payment that is less than required to satisfy the note rate, the unpaid interest is deferred by adding it to the loan balance. See negative amortization.


Failure to make payments on time. This can lead to foreclosure.

Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)

An independent agency of the federal government that guarantees long-term, low-or no-down payment mortgages to eligible veterans.

Discount Point

see points

Down Payment

Money paid to make up the difference between the purchase price and the mortgage amount.


A provision in a mortgage or deed of trust that allows the lender to demand immediate payment of the balance of the mortgage if the mortgage holder sells the home.

Earnest Money

Money given by a buyer to a seller as part of the purchase price to bind a transaction or assure payment.


The VA home loan benefit is called entitlement. Entitlement for a VA guaranteed home loan. This is also known as eligibility.

Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA)

A federal law that requires lenders and other creditors to make credit equally available without discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, marital status or receipt of income from public assistance programs.


The difference between the fair market value and current indebtedness, also referred to as the owner's interest. The value an owner has in real estate over and above the obligation against the property.


An account held by the lender into which the homebuyer pays money for tax or insurance payments. Also earnest deposits held pending loan closing.

Fannie Mae

see Federal National Mortgage Association.

Farmers Home Administration (FmHA)

Provides financing to farmers and other qualified borrowers who are unable to obtain loans elsewhere.

Federal Home Loan Bank Board (FHLBB)

The former name for the regulatory and supervisory agency for federally chartered savings institutions. Agency is now called the Office of Thrift Supervision

Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (FHLMC) also called "Freddie Mac"

A quasi-governmental agency that purchases conventional mortgage from insured depository institutions and HUD-approved mortgage bankers

Federal Housing Administration (FHA)

A division of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Its main activity is the insuring of residential mortgage loans made by private lenders. FHA also sets standards for underwriting mortgages.

Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA) also known as "Fannie Mae"

A tax-paying corporation created by Congress that purchases and sells conventional residential mortgages as well as those insured by FHA or guaranteed by VA. This institution, which provides funds for one in seven mortgages, makes mortgage money more available and more affordable.

FHA loan

A loan insured by the Federal Housing Administration open to all qualified home purchasers. While there are limits to the size of FHA loans ($155,250 as of 1/1/96), they are generous enough to handle moderately priced homes almost anywhere in the country.

FHA mortgage insurance

Requires a fee (up to 2.25 percent of the loan amount) paid at closing to insure the loan with FHA. In addition, FHA mortgage insurance requires an annual fee of up to 0.5 percent of the current loan amount, paid in monthly installments. The lower the down payment, the more years the fee must be paid.


The Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation provides a secondary market for savings and loans by purchasing their conventional loans. Also known as "Freddie Mac."

Firm Commitment

A promise by FHA to insure a mortgage loam for a specified property and borrower. A promise from a lender to make a mortgage loan.

Fixed Rate Mortgage

The mortgage interest rate will remain the same on these mortgages throughout the term of the mortgage for the original borrower.


The Federal National Mortgage Association is a secondary mortgage institution that is the largest single holder of home mortgages in the United States. FNMA buys VA, FHA, and conventional mortgages from primary lenders. Also known as "Fannie Mae."


A legal process by which the lender or the seller forces a sale of a mortgaged property because the borrower has not met the terms of the mortgage. Also known as a repossession of property.

Freddie Mac

see Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation

Ginnie Mae

see Government National Mortgage Association.

Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA)
Graduated Payment Mortgage (GPM)

A type of flexible-payment mortgage where the payments increase for a specified period of time and then level off. This type of mortgage has negative amortization built into it.


A promise by one party to pay a debt or perform an obligation contracted by another if the original party fails to pay or perform according to a contract

Hazard Insurance

A form of insurance in which the insurance company protects the insured from specified losses, such as fire, windstorm and the like.

Housing Expenses-to-Income Ratio

The ratio, expressed as a percentage, which results when a borrower's housing expenses are divided by his/her gross monthly income. See debt-to-income ratio.


That portion of a borrower's monthly payments held by the lender or servicer to pay for taxes, hazard insurance, mortgage insurance, lease payments, and other items as they become due. Also known as reserves.


A published interest rate against which lenders measure the difference between the current interest rate on an adjustable rate mortgage and that earned by other investments (such as one- three-, and five-year U.S. Treasury security yields, the monthly average interest rate on loans closed by savings and loan institutions, and the monthly average costs-of-funds incurred by savings and loans), which is then used to adjust the interest rate on an adjustable mortgage up or down.

Interim Financing

A construction loam made during completion of a building or a project. A permanent loan usually replaces this loan after completion.


A money source for a lender.

Jumbo Loan

A loan with a balance between $240,000 - $650,000 as of 1/1/99 than the limits set by the Federal National Mortgage Association and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation. Because jumbo loans cannot be funded by these two agencies, they usually carry a higher interest rate. Loans larger than $650,000 is referred to as Super Jumbo loans. These loans may carry a higher rate then the standard jumbo loans.


A claim upon a piece of property for the payment or satisfaction of a debt or obligation.

Loan-to-Value Ratio

The relationship between the amount of the mortgage loan and the appraised value of the property expressed as a percentage.


The amount a lender adds to the index on an adjustable rate mortgage to establish the adjusted interest rate.

Market Value

The highest price that a buyer would pay and the lowest price a seller would accept on a property. Market value may be different from the price a property could actually be sold for at a given time.

MIP (Mortgage Insurance Premium)

Insurance from FHA to the lender against incurring a loss on account of the borrower's default.

Mortgage Insurance

Money paid to insure the mortgage when the down payment is less than 20 percent. See private mortgage insurance, FHA mortgage insurance.


The lender


The borrower or homeowner

Negative Amortization

Occurs when your monthly payments are not large enough to pay all the interest due on the loan. This unpaid interest is added to the unpaid balance of the loan. The danger of negative amortization is that the homebuyer ends up owing more than the original amount of the loan.

Net Effective Income

The borrower's gross income minus federal income tax.

Non Assumption Clause

A statement in a mortgage contract forbidding the assumption of the mortgage without the prior approval of the lender. Note: The signed obligation to pay a debt, as a mortgage note.

Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS)

The regulatory and supervisory agency for federally chartered savings institutions. Formally known as Federal Home Loan Bank Board

Origination Fee

The fee charged by a lender to prepare loan documents, make credit checks, inspect and sometimes appraise a property; usually computed as a percentage of the face value of the loan.

Permanent Loan

A long term mortgage, usually ten years or more. Also called an "end loan."


Principal, Interest, Taxes and Insurance. Also called monthly housing expense.

Pledged account Mortgage (PAM)

Money is placed in a pledged savings account and this fund plus earned interest is gradually used to reduce mortgage payments.

Points (loan discount points)

Prepaid interest assessed at closing by the lender. Each point is equal to 1 percent of the loan amount (e.g., two points on a $100,000 mortgage would cost $2,000).

Power of Attorney

A legal document authorizing one person to act on behalf of another.

Prepaid Expenses

Necessary to create an escrow account or to adjust the seller's existing escrow account. Can include taxes, hazard insurance, private mortgage insurance and special assessments.


A privilege in a mortgage permitting the borrower to make payments in advance of their due date.

Prepayment Penalty

Money charged for an early repayment of debt. Prepayment penalties are allowed in some form (but not necessarily imposed) in many states.

Primary Mortgage Market

Lenders making mortgage loans directly to borrowers such as savings and loan associations, commercial banks, and mortgage companies. These lenders sometimes sell their mortgages into the secondary mortgage markets such as to FNMA or GNMA, etc.


The amount of debt, not counting interest, left on a loan.

Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)

In the event that you do not have a 20 percent down payment, lenders will allow a smaller down payment - as low as 5 percent in some cases. With the smaller down payment loans, however, borrowers are usually required to carry private mortgage insurance. Private mortgage insurance will usually require an initial premium payment and may require an additional monthly fee depending on you loan's structure.


A real estate broker or an associate holding active membership in a local real estate board affiliated with the National Association of Realtors.


The cancellation of a contract. With respect to mortgage refinancing, the law that gives the homeowner three days to cancel a contract in some cases once it is signed if the transaction uses equity in the home as security.

Recording Fees

Money paid to the lender for recording a home sale with the local authorities, thereby making it part of the public records.


Obtaining a new mortgage loan on a property already owned, often to replace existing loans on the property.

Renegotiable Rate Mortgage

A loan in which the interest rate is adjusted periodically. See adjustable rate mortgage.


Short for the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. RESPA is a federal law that allows consumers to review information on known or estimated settlement cost once after application and once prior to or at a settlement. The law requires lenders to furnish the information after application only.

Reverse Annuity Mortgage (RAM)

A form of mortgage in which the lender makes periodic payments to the borrower using the borrower's equity in the home as Satisfaction of Mortgage: The document issued by the mortgagee when the mortgage loam is paid in full. Also called a "release of mortgage."

Second Mortgage

A mortgage made subsequent to another mortgage and subordinate to the first one.

Secondary Mortgage Market

The place where primary mortgage lenders sell the mortgages they make to obtain more funds to originate more new loans. It provides liquidity for the lenders.


All the steps and operations a lender performs to keep a loan in good standing, such as collection of payments, payment of taxes, insurance, property inspections and the like.

Settlement/Settlement Costs

see closing/closing costs

Shared Appreciation Mortgage (SAM)

A mortgage in which a borrower receives a below-market interest rate in return for which the lender (or another investor such as a family member or other partner) receives a portion of the future appreciation in the value of the property. May also apply to mortgage where the borrowers shares the monthly principal and interest payments with another party in exchange for part of the appreciation.

Simple Interest

Interest which is computed only on the principle balance.


A measurement of land, prepared by a registered land surveyor, showing the location of the land with reference to know points, its dimensions, and the location and dimensions of any buildings.

Sweat Equity

Equity created by a purchaser performing work on a property being purchased.


A document that gives evidence of an individual's ownership of property.

Title Insurance

A policy, usually issued by a title insurance company, which insures a homebuyer against errors in the title search. The cost of the policy is usually a function of the value of the property, and is often borne by the purchaser and/or seller. Policies are also available to protect the lender's interests.

Title Search

An examination of municipal records to determine the legal ownership of property. Usually is performed by a title company.


A federal law requiring disclosure of the Annual Percentage Rate to homebuyers shortly after they apply for the loan. Also known as Regulation Z.

Two-Step Mortgage

A mortgage in which the borrower receives a below-market interest rate for a specified number of years (most often seven or 10), and then receives a new interest rate adjusted (within certain limits) to market conditions at that time. The lender sometimes has the option to call the loan due with 30 days notice at the end of seven or 10 years. Also called "Super Seven" or "Premier" mortgage.


The decision whether to make a loan to a potential home buyer based on credit, employment, assets, and other factors and the matching of this risk to an appropriate rate and term or loan amount.


Interest charged in excess of the legal rate established by law.

VA Loan

A long-term, low-or no-down payment loan guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Restricted to individuals qualified by military service or other entitlements.

VA Mortgage Funding Fee

A premium of up to 1-7/8 percent (depending on the size of the down payment) paid on a VA-backed loan. On a $75,000 fixed-rate mortgage with no down payment, this would amount to $1,406 either paid at closing or added to the amount financed.

Variable Rate Mortgage (VRM)

see adjustable rate mortgage


ion of Deposit (VOD)

A document signed by the borrower's financial institution verifying the status and balance of his/her financial accounts.

Verification of Employment (VOE)

A document signed by the borrower's employer verifying his/her position and salary.

Warehouse Fee

Many mortgage firms must borrow funds on a short-term basis in order to originate loans that are to be sold later in the secondary mortgage market (or to investors). When the prime rate of interest is higher on short-term loans than on mortgage loans, the mortgage firm has an economic loss that is offset by charging a warehouse fee.

Wraparound Mortgage

Results when an existing assumable loan is combined with a new loan, resulting in an interest rate somewhere between the old rate and the current market rate. The payments are made to a second lender or the previous homeowner, who then forwards the payments to the first lender after taking the additional amount off the top.

What you will need to provide:

Download it Uniform Residential Loan Application
Download it The Housing Financial Discrimination Act. Fair Lending Notice
Download it Mortgage Loan Disclosure Statement/ Good Faith Estimate
Download it Additional Required California Disclosure
Download it Credit Authorization
Download it Mortgage Broker Fee Disclosure



Rodney L. Mann, Jr.


BRE 00942057 • NMLS 312199

Rod is a graduate of Stanford Business school, and has lived in Palo Alto for over 14 years. Rod founded University Investments in 1993 with the belief that a mortgage loan company should do more than just obtain financing for the clients. He felt that homeowners deserved an easy, worry free, mortgage experience and set out to provide that for his clients. Rod prides himself in being a great resource for all his clients financing needs. His background includes commercial real estate leasing and sales, residential development and sales and mortgage financing. This gives him a wide breath of knowledge to help his clients manage in most cases their largest asset. This formula has been successful as University Investments has funded over $1.5 billion in loans since its inception.

Neil N Salem


BRE 01358529 • NMLS 278131

Greg O.


BRE 00857361 • NMLS 235955

Greg Osgood has originated mortgages with University Investments since 1999 after spending six years with Citicorp Mortgage. During his time with Citicorp, Greg became the top-ranked mortgage originator in the United States and was annually awarded the President's Cup for outstanding client service.

Greg is a graduate of U.C. Berkeley and of the University of San Francisco. He has extensive experience in Bay Area real estate, and specializes in handling financing for high net worth clients.

California Broker License #00857361|Nationwide Mortgage License #235955

Greg M.

Office Manager


Current Mortgage Information

We've assembled some great resources to help get you started with a new mortgage, or refinance an existing loan. Check interest rates, try our online mortgage calculator, download an application or send us your contact information.
We're anxious to work with you. Please contact us for current rates!

Mortgage Calculators

Contact Us

Please contact us by calling University Investments at (650) 325-5700. Email us to start the pre-qualification process. We do not share your information with any 3rd party.

University Investments
2799 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto, CA 94306