“How do I qualify?”
“Where do I start?
“What am I doing?????
Three questions I get every time I connect with a new buyer. And they are very good questions.
First off – how do I qualify? (Remember, I’m a Realtor, not a lender)
The first thing you need to do is talk to family and friends who have recently bought a home. Ask them who they went to for their mortgage. Talk to your own bank as well. Shop around and compare rates.
CAVEAT EMPTOR: I will always, when asked, provide at least 3 names of lenders/mortgage brokers that have worked well for my past buyers. They will usually be local. Why? It’s fine to use whomever you wish but know that when you use a national entity, your file is going to pass thru at least 40 hands ALL OVER THE COUNTRY, and they do not know anything about Las Cruces. Local lenders know the market, the special programs that apply, and 9 times out of 10 your file stays right here.
PRE-QUALIFYIED VS PRE APPROVED
You’ve heard those terms, so what’s the difference?
Pre-qualified means that a lender has taken a quick look at the basic forms you’ve brought him, run some numbers and come up with your top price to buy. There is still a ton of work to be done – hence that dead time between end of inspections and actual close.
Pre-Approved means your file is just waiting for an address, an accepted purchase contract and some more information. Pre-approved means just that: you are approved for a mortgage. In my (Arizona) experience, you can move very quickly to close after inspections.
What’s Next? Our First Sit Down Meeting