Tuesday, June 7, 2011

How To Get Pre-Qualified or Pre-Approved For a Mortgage (Or Home Loan)

Working closely with a lender is an important part of my business.  I like to stay informed and help my clients understand everything about buying a home.  Many people have heard a lot of real estate terms, but don’t always know what they mean.  I asked a loan officer to help explain the initial qualification process for me.  This is what he had to say about Pre-Qualifing/Pre-Approvals:

This is a touchy topic these days with all the different regulations and laws that have come out. Everyone has to step lightly as to not get in trouble for saying the wrong things that could be taken as misleading or misguiding.

Take for example the words pre-qualification, and pre-approval. As a loan officer, you are not allowed to market a "Pre-Approval" anymore because "Approval" indicates you just approved a person for a specific loan. Although loan officers can issue pre-approvals, it is not allowed on marketing materials because it simply cannot be done correctly until a borrower has picked out a property, and a full loan application has been made.

"Pre-Qualification" simply means to sit down and cover the very basics of getting a loan. This simply means that you are "Qualified" to apply for a mortgage and have high chances of obtaining a mortgage and so this is the lingo they want loan officers to use. This is what realtors and sellers want to see happen before you write an offer on a house. Once you have a letter from a lender they then begin to take you seriously.

This is good for you too. You need to know you qualify for a loan (mortgage) before you buy anyway. And after the process is complete the loan officer can tell you how much money you qualify for, what payment ranges will be, and also a lot more needed information that you might not realize you need to know.

The process usually should take only 10-15 minutes. You can fill out information online, over the phone, or in person. Most people love a in person meeting at their place of business because of fraud these days. 

What information a loan officer will need during the pre-qualification is your rough estimated income (gross- not after taxes!) to see what debt to income ratios you are at. He then talks to you about your overall credit situation, and then other details associated with each individual that may effect things like if you have any money to put down, etc. Every transaction is different and it is best at this point to be very open and give all the information you can.

After you sit and talk, your loan officer should be able to tell you what loan programs you qualify for or if there are any challenges you need to overcome before looking for a home. But, if you do qualify, your loan officer should issue a letter for you to give to your realtor to put an offer in on a home you love!

If you want to do this, contact David:

David DuBeau – Loan Officer
Sterling Savings Bank

Once you're pre-approved, "Let's Go Shopping!"   Shopping for a home has never been easier.  I can send you information via email so you can preview many homes from your computer.  Then, you can select which ones that best fit your criteria and then we see those in person.   We can have you in a home sometimes in less than 30 days.

For a list of properties, give me a call:

Cheryl Malone – Real Estate Broker
Windermere Investors Marketplace

Remember, the first step in buying a home is to get pre-qualified on a home loan! 

Sellers do not like to deal with buyers who might not qualify. There are plenty of different options out there (even up to 100% financing). 

So get the best Realtor / Real Estate Agent and Loan Officer in Medford and the Rogue Valley working for you today.

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