Are you pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage? Before you start house hunting, it would be helpful to know how much home you can afford. A lender may "pre-qualify" you with an estimate of an amount you most likely will qualify for. However, this does not guarantee you will be able to obtain a loan.
A brief appointment with a mortgage lender can get you pre-approved for the maximum amount of mortgage you can obtain. This procedure includes running a credit check and verifying your income and expenses. Your lender may then provide you with a certificate of approval for the amount of the loan for which you qualify.
Armed with this information, you and your Realtor can start hunting for your new home with confidence. Your Realtor will be able to save you a great deal of time by searching for homes that meet your needs in your price range. You will also be in an excellent bargaining position when it comes to negotiating the best price for the home you choose. Pre-approval of a mortgage can also help your transaction move forward to a speedy close.
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