George Duarte is a 31-year veteran of the mortgage industry and president of Horizon Financial Associates, a Diamond Certified company. He can be reached at (510) 402-5678 or by email.

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Innovative Use for a Reverse Mortgage

By George Duarte of George L. Duarte - Horizon Financial Associates, a Diamond Certified Expert Contributor

FREMONT − More so than any previous generation, today’s college graduates are leaving school saddled with large amounts of debt, to the point where many are unable to qualify for a home loan. If this is the case for one or more…Read More

Video: Innovative Use for a Reverse Mortgage

With George Duarte of George L. Duarte - Horizon Financial Associates, a Diamond Certified Expert Contributor

FREMONT − Host, Sarah Rutan: If you have a child with debilitating college loan debt, one way you can help them is by utilizing a reverse mortgage. Today we’re in Fremont with Diamond Certified Expert Contributor George Duarte of Horizon Financial Associates to learn more.

Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Profile

George Duarte: A Local Focus

  • George Duarte is president of Horizon Financial Associates

"Real estate...is almost ‘hyper-local’—you’re constantly involved with people in the local area and market, which is an aspect of this business I thoroughly enjoy.”

FREMONT − After several years working in international commerce, George Duarte made the switch to a more locally focused livelihood. “In 1986, I decided to leave my job in the import/export industry to pursue a career in real estate,” he explains. “Originally, I thought I’d become a realtor, but eventually I decided to get into the financial side of the field. Besides the fact that it was a rapidly growing industry, I’d always been good with numbers, so it seemed like the right fit. After working for a local mortgage brokerage for a couple of years, I struck out on my own and became a broker.”

Today, as president of Horizon Financial Associates, George says he appreciates the local focus of his second career. “In my previous occupation, I worked for large corporations on an international scale, which was interesting and rewarding in its own right, but it left me with very little connection to my local community. Real estate, on the other hand, is almost ‘hyper-local’—you’re constantly involved with people in the local area and market, which is an aspect of this business I thoroughly enjoy.”

A resident of Livermore, George says he’s grateful for the strong ties he’s developed within his community. “Because I’ve been doing business here for so long, I know lots of people and have a lot of connections. I’m very active in my Chamber of Commerce and mortgage broker association, as well as the Bay East Association of REALTORS. Of course, I also love the great weather and all the amenities we have in the Bay Area.”

Outside of work, George spends his time immersed in a variety of interests and activities, from reading to attending concerts and sports events. He also takes advantage of opportunities to venture outside the local sphere. “I like traveling, both around the west coast and outside of the country,” he affirms. “I’m actually an experienced international traveler and have been to Europe many times.” Additionally, George enjoys spending time with his two adult sons, Louis and Nick.

In regard to his professional career, George says true success is grounded in the Golden Rule. “When I first started in this industry, like most rookies, my focus was on the numbers, but over time I learned that true success comes when you put your clients first. When you act in the best interests of your clients, it not only leads to good financial outcomes, it also brings psychological benefits such as peace of mind. That’s why I always treat my clients the way I’d want to be treated and look for ways to add value to their lives.”

When asked the first thing he’d do if he were to retire tomorrow, George says he’d hit the open road. “I would probably take a long road trip across the United States. It would be fun to go from one coast to the other and take my time seeing the sights and exploring new places.”

Ask me anything!
Q: What kinds of books do you like to read?

A: I enjoy everything from political thrillers to historical biographies, but my favorite genre is probably spy and international intrigue, particularly the work of Len Deighton.

Q: What’s your favorite book?

A: “A People’s History of the United States,” by Howard Zinn. He was actually my mentor at Boston University, where I majored in political science.

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

A: China. It’s a very dynamic place with lots of things to see. I’d love to see Hong Kong and Shanghai in particular, and maybe take a cruise on the Yangtze River.

Q: Do you collect anything?

A: I collect sports and movie memorabilia.

Q: What’s your favorite movie?

A: “Casablanca.”

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