Being Pre-Approved is
Your #1 Home Buying Preparation Tool
Unless you are paying cash for a house it is imperative to get a mortgage pre-approval letter.
What is this letter?
A preapproval letter is a letter from your mortgage officer or bank, stating that you can actually afford the home you are making an offer on. It basically does three things:
It tells you what price range you can afford
It tells real estate agents and home sellers that you’re serious about buying a home
It makes your mortgage process much easier.
How Do You Get One?
This isn’t a letter you make up or fake. And it’s not just pre-qualification either. You can’t just enter your information on a mortgage calculator and think a lender will actually give you money just because you say you can afford it.
A pre-approval letter from a bank or mortgage office is much more. AND You may not even be allowed to view a property in person without one!
So what’s first?
Shop for a mortgage, THEN the house.
The very last thing you want is to find the home of your dreams only to find out you can’t afford it. Don’t disappoint yourself, find the mortgage first, then the home.
What Will Sellers Do?
If you present an offer with no real proof you can afford it, most likely the seller will reject the offer, especially if they have other offers on the table, or they will ask for a letter of pre-approval before they will accept your offer. Either way, having it beforehand takes that so-called “shame” off the table.
So How Can You Get One?
You have to actually talk to a loan officer. This can be your bank, mortgage broker, like myself, or anyone that has the ability to fund a loan. You will need to apply for a home loan and to do that you’ll need these documents:
- Pay Stubs or W-2s for a couple years
- Tax Returns (especially for self-employed individuals)
- Bank statements
- Investment account statements
- Assets and Liabilities (loan commitments, divorce decrees for child or alimony support, credit card statements, car or student loan information)
Some documents may trigger the need for others, so be ready with as much documentation on your finances as possible.
You don’t have to lock in a rate just because you got a pre-approval letter
You can always lock in a rate later when the rates are more favorable. But by getting a pre-approval letter started now, you can begin to look at homes free and clear!
ONCE YOU HAVE THAT LETTER – DON’T DO THIS
- Apply for more loans
- Make large purchases (besides the home)
- Take out more credit
- Max your credit cards
- Lose or change your job
- Do anything financial that could alter your credit score
Seriously… I know you want to buy new furniture for a new home or whatever but don’t. Just don’t do anything major with your finances until your home has cleared. TRUST ME.
Get Started Right Now! Find Out How Much You Can Afford Today!