The mortgage application process can feel stressful and drawn-out, but it doesn't have to. In fact, if you take some time to prepare by collecting your paperwork and learning about the process, applying for a home loan can be fairly straightforward.
Here's what you can do to streamline the process:
- Get your credit in order - Going in with a great credit score helps. If need be, work on your credit before buying a home -- pay down debts and check your credit report for any errors. Any little change can help.
- Have your paperwork ready - You'll need to provide lots of financial documentation, and that can take awhile to get organized. But you can start before you apply: Collect your recent pay stubs, tax returns, W-2s and bank account statements. If you have any retirement accounts, stocks or bonds, you'll also need records of those.
- Learn about mortgage products - Look into the different loan options out there. Do you understand the difference between fixed-rate and adjustable-rate loans? What sort of term are you interested in? How much will you need for a down payment with each type? Have questions ready to discuss in person.
- Apply for preapproval or prequalification - Getting prequalified or preapproved can help set the foundation for a quick and easy application. It can also help you determine your price range when searching for a home. As a bonus, a preapproval letter can give you a leg up over other buyers.
Your actual mortgage application might only take a few hours, but you'll likely need to provide updated documentation later in the process. Have questions? Get in touch today.
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