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Home buying process / Can I be a homeowner?

Getting pre-approved for a loan

Prior to your search for a new home, you may want to speak with a lender to get pre-approved for a loan. A pre-approval is an unofficial estimate of the home you can afford. This will help you concentrate on a specific price range of home, and save you time so you won’t be looking at properties well over the price that you can afford to purchase.

Here is some information that you might need at your loan application meeting:

  • Driver’s license(s) and social security number(s)
  • Addresses for past two years residences
  • Names, addresses and phone numbers for all employers for the past two years
  • Self-employed applicants must provide: 2 years tax returns (business and persona, all schedules and K-1s) and current year to date profit and loss statement, prepared by an accountant
  • Commissioned applicants must provide: 2 years tax returns and current paystub reflecting year-to-date earnings and expenses
  • Names, addresses and account numbers for all depository accounts for checking, savings, brokerage accounts, etc. Balances must be provided as well as copies of the three most recent statements
  • Names, addresses and account numbers for all creditors (banks,finance companies, credit unions, credit cards, student loans, etc.) Balances must be provided.
  • Copy of complete separation agreement and divorce decree
  • Copy of lease(s) on rental property if owned less than two years
  • W-2s for previous 2 years or 1099s if applicable
  • Most recent pay stub(s) covering a one month period
  • Check for credit report and appraisal.
  • DD214 or Certificate of Eligibility (VA Loans ONLY)
  • Copy of contract on current home if applicable, or settlement statement of current sold property sold if applicable.
  • Evidence of satisfaction of any judgments, collections or public record.
  • Bankruptcy filing and discharge papers

You also have the option to get preapproved for a mortgage loan. Having your loan preapproved means that a lending institution has processed your loan application and approved a specific mortgage amount based on your income, debt and credit scores. Some buyers feel that they have more negotiating power when they can provide proof of pre-approval to the seller of the property.

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