The MTA Advantage is a publication of MTA Benefits, a subsidiary of the Massachusetts Teachers Association
“Many things drive the decision to buy a specific home,” said Paul Gershkowitz, first vice president of
retail lending for Berkshire Bank Home Lending, a partner in the MTA Mortgage Program. “Commuting
distance, schools, lifestyle, tax rates and real estate values are some of the most important.”
How can first-time buyers make the right decision – selecting the right home in the location they want
at a price they can afford?
“The answer is to start early and develop a plan – before even looking for a house,” said Gershkowitz.
“Using a checklist as a guide, buyers should gather information on the marketplace by doing extensive
online research, getting referrals from other homebuyers and talking to real estate professionals. The final
step is narrowing down the search to a specific home type, locations and Realtor.”
Gershkowitz noted, “According to a recent survey by Discover Home Loans, more and more buyers are
using online technology to help with the homebuying process. It saves time and makes buyers more
knowledgeable and comfortable with decisions they make.”
Making the right decisions before you buy a home
Second in a three-part series for first-time homebuyers
The first article in the series, “Start early to meet stricter lending standards,” explains to
first-time buyers how to get lower interest rates and determine the price and monthly
payments they can afford. To read the article, visit www.mtabenefits.com/mortgage-program.htm.
MTAB Annual Meeting
MTA Benefits welcomed three new members to
its Board of Directors and thanked one outgoing
director at MTAB’s annual meeting on Nov. 13.
Standing from left to right are MTAB President Maryann
Robinson; Directors Robert Travers Jr., Richard Liston and
Gerard Ruane; and MTA Vice President Janet Anderson.
Seated from left to right are Directors Bonnie Page and
Kathleen Meltsakos and outgoing Director Lynn Howard.
Not pictured are MTA President Barbara Madeloni,
MTA Executive Director-Treasurer Ann Clarke and Director
continued on page 4