It's Military Family Appreciation Month, and we wanted to take this opportunity to highlight our very own #APMFamily who have served our great country and now work to help other military families and veterans realize their dreams of homeownership.
Justin Hahn, Loan Advisor for Roseville Branch, NLMS# 1706475
Justin Hahn proudly served his country as a Marine from 2001 to 2009—though, as they say, “Once a Marine, always a Marine.” There were many things he took away from his service, but the biggest one was self-discipline. Justin notes that there’s a caveat with self-discipline, however, when it comes from the military. Vets have to make a conscious effort to apply those lessons to their daily civilian lives once they’re back home.
Justin knows self-discipline can be a huge asset when it’s used for one’s mental and physical health, and in the workplace. He works hard to ensure that veterans are doing what they can to maximize the value of their military experience, which includes working on themselves and utilizing the VA loan program.
Sadly, many war veterans suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which doesn’t disappear when they’re back home. Justin knows this can impact their mood and even their level of trust. That’s why he strives to let vets know that, as one of them, he understands what they’re going through and that there may be good days and bad. Showing vets that someone will take care of them is one way Justin breaks through these walls. Meeting them where they are that day is another, which is why Justin tailors his communication style to his clients.
Some of the distrust veterans have is not unfounded, Justin notes. Many can feel like the system has failed them, and those feelings can extend into the loan process. There’s an unfounded stigma that VA loans are harder to do and less likely to be accepted. Justin has made it his mission to dispel this rumor—for veteran borrowers, realtors, and sellers.
What he’d like to see more than anything are more down payment assistance programs that can help with closing costs. Justin knows vets tend to be excellent at paying their bills on time, but many struggle to provide all the upfront costs associated with buying a home. He notes that self-discipline can pad their savings, but a little help from others goes a long way, too.
Jessalyn Glassgow, Loan Officer for Military Home Loans, a division of APM, NMLS# 911548
Serving in the Navy for more than five years brought tons of new experiences and traits to Jessalyn Glassgow. Being a “small-town girl from Iowa” in a town that didn’t even have a stoplight, Jessalyn was quickly thrown into a new world when she was stationed in San Diego.
She got to see more of the country, experience big cities, meet people outside the Iowa/Missouri border and, most importantly, gain a sense of self and confidence that she didn’t have before. Jessalyn also believes the Navy helped her enhance her work ethic and level of respect, two items that have served her well in her civilian life.
After separating from the Navy due to a career-ending injury, Jessalyn entered the mortgage industry with Military Home Loans, a division of APM. Her on-the-ground experience with the military, paired with her newly acquired skills, made Jessalyn an ideal financial analyst and banker to serve veterans. She’s so committed to this industry and group that Jessalyn recently uprooted her family from Iowa to open a new branch for Military Home Loans in the Dallas–Fort Worth area.
Though she’s been there only two months, Jessalyn has already partnered with two local organizations to offer lunch-and-learn programs for vets. The Texas Constitution also prohibits vets from utilizing their cash-out refinance benefit, a cause Jessalyn is very passionate about. She is working with lobbyists, realtors, and veterans to ensure that everyone understands the VA home loan benefits. This includes dispelling the myth that VA loans are harder to do and take longer than traditional loans. Her goal is to help as many veterans as possible, and through her outreach work, Jessalyn is doing exactly that.
Carter Short, Senior Loan Officer for the San Diego Branch, NMLS# 1005967
After graduating from high school in Fresno, California, Carter Short wasn’t quite ready to go to college. Instead, he joined the military, serving two years in the Navy and another two with the Army as a National Guardsman. Having served in the military during peacetime, Carter had the good fortune of seeing the world. This included the Panama Canal, Bahamas, Jamaica, and Acapulco.
His service also came with some “grunt work,” however. As beautiful as those places were, Carter’s daily view wasn’t quite as pretty. He was assigned to the boiler room, where he cleaned the ship’s engines while they were still hot. All these experiences gave Carter perspective, as well as an appreciation for small details and the chain of command. In the military, Carter found that life typically revolved around three questions: What’s our mission? What do we have to do to get it done? What needs to be figured out?
Those questions and goals remain relevant today as he serves his clients, including veterans, as an APM senior loan officer in San Diego. It was actually a lack of knowledge that got Carter into the industry to begin with. He was closing on his home loan and had been discouraged from using his VA loan benefit. When his loan officer filled him in on the advantages of the VA loan, Carter was upset that he had shied away from it and knew he wanted to help others avoid the same mistake.
Today, his mission is helping vets gain the financial literacy they need post-service. He frames it as having a new goal for vets—one that involves understanding credit, building savings, and utilizing those VA benefits. Carter is one of the founding members of VAREP (Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals), which provides counseling and education surrounding financial literacy and VA loan awareness. He also coaches his 10-year-old son’s AYSO soccer team and is active with the Lions Club’s vision program, which makes sure children have glasses for school.
Larry Gonzales, Senior Loan Officer for Aligned Mortgage, a division of APM, NMLS# 1452722
Larry Gonzales enjoyed a successful 24-year career in the Navy before he retired to Hawaii in 2016. During that time he served as a Surface Warfare Officer, working on cruisers and destroyers and living all over the world.
The Navy taught Larry the power of organization, time management, attention to detail, and having a plan. He’s carried those lessons with him as sales manager and senior loan officer for Aligned Mortgage, a division of APM. Thanks to his vast military experience, Larry appreciates what it takes to make a team truly successful. He knows that everyone learns differently, so he approaches both team members and his borrowers as unique individuals, catering his communication style to their strengths.
Larry is also empathetic to the challenges of both military and civilian life. This includes deployments and the stress associated with a move or relocation. He’s always happy to discuss these difficulties with his clients, 95% of whom are veterans. Larry loves making dreams come true, and he knows his personal experiences, professional knowledge, and large network of professionals can make that happen for others.
Once their loan has funded, Larry likes to move on to the client’s next goal, whether that’s protecting their home, creating a living trust, funding a HELOC, real estate investing, or something else. Larry has a bevy of professionals at his side to help his clients navigate the next milestone as they pursue their dreams. He is also looking forward to becoming a first-time grandfather in December.