These are conforming mortgages, such as VA loans and FHA loans. Conforming is a term that refers to the banking institution and the guidelines the bank has to follow to be eligible for insurance under that administration. The bank has to follow certain guidelines those entities set if they want to issue mortgages to other people.
A broker is an agent who usually has access to various mortgage companies. This person helps people find the best rates and deals and is not partial to one mortgage company.
Knowing whether to go to a bank or agent is sometimes difficult. Going to an agent benefits people who want someone else to find them the best deals rather than doing it themselves. However, going to a credit union might be an excellent idea. Credit unions sometimes offer much better overall loan rates than other organizations. Thus, it might be a good idea to check the rates before continuing to look for mortgage funds elsewhere.