Are you pre-qualified or pre-approved for a loan?
Before you begin to shop for a new home, set up a time to meet with us so we can figure out how much you can afford. This places you in a better position as a buyer. That’s when it is important to understand the distinction between being pre-qualified for a loan and pre-approved for a loan. The difference between the two terms are crucial when you decide to make an offer on a house.
To get pre-qualified for a loan, we collect information about your debt, income, and assets. We’ll look at your credit profile and assess goals for a down payment and get an idea of different loan programs that work for you. At that point, we issue you a pre-qualification letter indicating the amount you are pre-qualified to borrow.
It is important to understand that a pre-qualification letter is just an estimate of what you are eligible to borrow, not a commitment to lend. Getting pre-approved for a loan gives you competitive advantage when the time comes to bid on a home because you have been approved for a loan at a specified amount.
To get pre-approved, you will complete a mortgage application and provide us with various information verifying your employment, assets and financial status such as W-2 forms, bank records and credit card statements. We’ll review your mortgage options and submit your application to the lender that best meets your needs. Once the application process is complete you receive a Pre-Approval Letter indicating the maximum loan amount that you are able to afford.
This Pre-Approval Letter is not binding on the lender. It is subject to an appraisal of the home you wish to purchase and certain other conditions imposed by the lender shortly after the purchase contract is approved all parties. If your financial situation changes (e.g. you lose your job), interest rates rise or your approval window expires, your lender must review your scenario, anew, and recalculate your mortgage amount accordingly.