Technology has certainly streamlined the home buying process and introduced things that help purchasers make better decisions. Buyers have enthusiastically embraced video tours, digital signatures and the enormous amount of information available about a home, neighborhood, schools and neighbors.
The ironic thing is that buyers are ignoring the one single thing that can help them secure the “right” home. Talking to a lender or using a financial calculator is not pre-approval.
Pre-approval gives buyers the confidence to know the amount they can borrow which can result in bargaining power when dealing with a seller or competing against another offer. Transactions can close quicker once a buyer has been pre-approved. Pre-approval requires written verification on employment and income and ordering a credit report for the purpose of obtaining a mortgage. A mortgage credit score is different than what a person might see from credit reporting websites.
If any issues are discovered in the initial process, the purchaser and lender will have more time to correct them compared to trying to get it done during the loan approval period as stated in the sales contract.
Most lenders best interest rates are only available to the best borrowers. You might get approved on a loan but at a higher rate than you expected which could make a significant difference in the monthly payments.
The “right” home without financing will never have the buyer’s address. Getting pre-approved with a trusted mortgage professional is one of the first steps in the buying process. It can definitely be an advantage that will benefit you in negotiations and ultimately, during the time you own the home.