Understanding the Mortgage Process
We will provide you with everything you need to know about shopping for a mortgage all the way through closing one, and everything in between. This page has tips and resources to help you get smart on the mortgage process and know what to expect. Secondly, we’ve broken down the loan process for first-time home buyers in order to help you prepare for life’s biggest purchase.
The first step towards being a first-time home buyer is getting your home loan application underway. A great first-time home buyer tip at this stage is to make sure you have your basic personal and financial information at hand when beginning your home loan application. Your credit score, current employment status, debt and long-term financial goals will all be collected and discussed at this point in the mortgage process.
Not to be mistaken with a pre-qualification, a home loan pre-approval is a mortgage company’s commitment to issue a home loan for a specific property. This will be based off of your employment, credit and debt information.
This stage in the mortgage process will involve various documents, so please make sure you are prepared and as organized as possible coming into this step for the smoothest and quickest experience. While you may provide documents to your home loan expert at the beginning of mortgage processing, you may also be asked for additional information throughout any time during this stage, depending on your home loan type and financial situation.
During this mortgage processing stage, someone known as an underwriter and will review your application to make sure that your home and property are in good condition and that you'll be able to repay your home loan. You, the Sellers, your home loan expert and possibly your attorney will decide on a closing date. At closing, you'll sign many documents, which include your mortgage note and HUD-1 Settlement Statement. Once complete, you'll be handed your keys and will have successfully become a homeowner!
CLICK HERE to find out which home buyer loan programs are available in your area.
Why Get Pre-Qualified?
Pre-qualification acts as a "dry run" of the loan application process. The mortgage lender will use details you provide about your credit, income, assets and debts to arrive at an estimate of how much mortgage you can afford. The whole process may take only minutes or a few hours at most, and is free. While a "pre-qual" is non-binding to the lender (because the information you provide has not been verified), it does serve as a good indication to potential sellers of your general creditworthiness. These days most sellers will NOT accept an offer without at least a pre-approval letter, so if you are serious about buying this is the first step towards getting you in your new home.