Onto step 3! Now you have selected your Realtor to represent you and advise on one of the biggest financial decisions you will make - the next step is to get preapproved by a lender. With my business, I won't put in an offer on a home unless they have been preapproved. Another huge benefit of being preapproved are a few things - one of them being knowing your purchasing power.. There's nothing worse, in my opinion, than shopping for houses, falling in love with one and finding out that it is out of your price range.. Getting preapproved removes this possibility because we shop within our purchasing power. The second benefit of getting approved is that it gives you an understanding of what your payments will be, your interest rate, and how much of each payment will be taxes, principal, etc.
Who you select to do your mortgage through is a crucial part of the purchasing process, as they control the money, it can easily be a horrible experience depending on the lender. You could regret who you chose if your interest rate wasn't advised to lock at a certain time, or if they are disorganized and couldn't get it fully approved for underwriting in time.. This is why I have certain lenders I know do a good job and they are below.
Utah Independent Mortgage Corp
Fairway Independent Mortgage
Depending on the situation at hand, each lender will have different requirements for the documentation needed from you to get preapproved - in general, you should expect at least the following:
- Completed Application
- Two most recent months of assets listed on the application (checking, savings, 401k, funds, IRA's, etc)
- Most recent month of Paystubs
- Last 2 years of W2s
- Last 2 years of Tax Returns
Depending on where you are looking to purchase, there may be grants either from the city or the state that you can utilize. Most will require you stay in the house for a certain period of time. This money will go towards closing costs, your down payment, or any other expenses that arise in the process. Talk to the lenders to see if you qualify.
There are costs that are associated with "closing" the transaction. These are lender fees, title insurance fees, etc. They are approximately 2.5% of the purchase price of the house. The lender can provide you with more detailed estimates, but remember these are paid at closing and on top of the down payment (except for the Appraisal and the Home Inspection fees, as they are paid the day they are performed).
Shopping Around for Mortgage?
Definitely! Each lender is going to charge different fees and interest rates. If the first one you select, you are comfortable with - then go with them and don't look back. Choose the one that "clicks" with you the best.