Pre-qualification is the first and most important step in the mortgage loan process. Our loan advisors are highly-qualified to quickly grasp your financial situation and advise you concerning the type of loan that may best fit your needs. After you have decided on a loan type and amount, we will work to get you pre-qualified.
Why should I get pre-qualified?
The main benefits of getting pre-qualified are:
- You’ll know how much you can afford before you start buying
- You’ll be knowledgeable as you shop for real estate, and your agent will want to know how much you can afford
- Knowing what you can afford can boost your ability to negotiate effectively
Completion of a pre-qualification includes an analysis of your income and liabilities and a preliminary credit check.
After prequalification, we will provide you and your agent a letter, which will state the amount for which you qualify. The letter is NOT a loan commitment; it merely implies that your credit history and income are sufficient to obtain a loan in that amount. This letter should be included when you submit your offer to buy the home that you want. The listing agent will generally ask for this letter and will use it to assure the seller that the offer is supported by a lender’s assessment of your financial ability to obtain financing.
We have a convenient online application, which our loan advisors can help you with. Your application is the roadmap for the underwriter, so it is important that the information be clear and accurate. You will need to provide a two-year residence and employment history as well as information on your present income, assets, and debts.
Process the loan
This is the process of documenting and verifying the information from your loan application form. This is when employment, current assets, current liabilities and credit history are verified by outside sources in order to prove to the underwriter that you are capable of handling the payment on your home. We order the appraisal to establish the fair market value of the home. If required, we order a survey of the property. You may receive calls from one of our loan processors requesting additional information. This is normal. The goal in processing the loan is to be thorough so that the underwriter will have a clear understanding of your financial picture.
Coordinate with everyone in the transaction
We work with the title insurance agency, the listing real estate agent, the selling real estate agent, the appraiser, your homeowner’s insurance agent and you. Your real estate contract has specific dates, which you must meet to protect your rights under the contract. We understand that our timely action on your requests is important in helping you meet the loan application date, the appraisal deadline, the loan approval date and the closing date, and we take our responsibility in that regard seriously. Everyone’s cooperation is essential to a smooth transaction. If we do not meet these dates per the contract, then we are not doing our job in representing you.
Your loan advisor will have the most thorough knowledge of your specific situation and will assist you in evaluating the various loan products available to you. Your loan advisor does not make credit decisions concerning your loan application; those decisions are the responsibility of the loan underwriter. The underwriter’s job is to protect the lender by determining whether you have the financial ability to repay the loan.
Once the loan is approved, the underwriter may have some conditions to be met before closing the loan. This may be additional bank statements, verification of closing funds, letters of explanation on credit issues, evidence a previous home has been sold or additional criteria the underwriter feels is necessary to make the file meet guidelines. Those conditions must be met before your loan can close.