Hey, you’re lucky! I’m not going to get into the actual loan products, rates, terms, conditions, etc. because these change every day. Instead, let’s call this an introductory lesson in understanding why you need to get pre-approved to buy a home.

When you get to this page, you have already gone through many steps in the home buying process, but you’d be surprised at how many home buyers skip the loan application step and go right to making an offer on a home. What happens is that failing to qualify for a home loan is the most frustrating reason that such offers fall apart. And, it could’ve been prevented.

Would you go to the clothing store, spend hours trying on clothes, seeking what you wanted and then later wonder if you had the money to pay for it? I don’t think so. You would know that you had cash or a credit/debit card before you began the clothes-trying-on process. It’s the same thing when buying a home.

What I’ve learned is…

Every buyer is uncomfortable discussing their personal financial situation, and

An offer to buy a home without being pre-approved is a very weak offer.

If you wish to buy a home, you’re going to have to discuss your finances, because no one can buy a home without a financial disclosure.

When first meeting you, I will question you about your financial qualifying, but I won’t delve into it, because I don’t personally need to know your entire income, expense or credit history. But, I do need to be assured that you are taking steps to become financially qualified by a lender to buy a home before we actually go shopping. Which brings me back to the second thing I’ve learned.

Making an offer when you have a commitment letter or pre-approved letter in hand is the same as making a cash offer. Sellers weigh offers based on the buyer’s financial strength to actually complete the transaction. A letter of commitment tells the seller that you can buy the home. This is the best negotiating position you can be in.

Remember, there is a big difference between pre-qualification and pre-approval. When getting pre-approved, you submit information and figures to a loan officer who then calculates for you a specific home loan dollar amount that you should qualify for. Pre-approval means all of this plus the loan officer has confirmed credit history, income verification, as well as assets, liabilities and sources of down payment funds.

If you do not have a relationship with a mortgage company, I can be of help to you by recommending lenders who provide excellent service and who I like and trust. You, of course, have no obligation to use any lender that I recommend, but over the years, I have developed very close relationships with lenders who have proved themselves in every aspect and who are extremely reliable and competent. I have learned that it is best to get pre-approval through one of my successful, helpful loan officers first. Once that is completed, you may want to shop loan rates, terms and programs.

Reasons I recommend certain lenders over others are:

Reliability. The loan officer has performed consistently over many years.

Timeliness. In purchasing real estate, time is of the essence in several ways. I want to use a lender who is able to produce and complete loan documents in a timely fashion and meet all crucial deadlines.

Competitive Rates. I know of certain lenders who will consistently quote the most competitive rates and match competing loan products.

Service. I only use lenders who have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to provide my clients with the highest level of personal service.

These are just a few of the benefits I can provide you by recommending specific lenders. Of course, there is no obligation on your part to use them, but you certainly want to allow them the opportunity to earn your business. Feel free to contact me directly for the names and numbers of my recommended lenders. This is just another service I provide to be the right one.