If you’re buying a home with a mortgage, you absolutely need to get a pre-approval first. Here’s why.

There’s no doubt about it. It’s a very competitive market today if you are looking to buy a home.

Inventory is near record lows, and more and more homebuyers are entering the market. This means you need every advantage to grab that perfect home when you do find it.

One no-brainer is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. A pre-approval informs you of how much you can borrow and it’s something you will need to do at a later point anyway.

A pre-approval can mean the difference between having your offer accepted or having to watch your dream home go to somebody else in a crazy market like this.

In spite of all these good reasons, less than 10% of buyers who got a mortgage get pre-approved by the lender who originated the loan. In other words, you can definitely get a leg up on the competition by starting your home search at the loan office rather than at the open house.


Here are a few things that you will need:

1. Proof of income. At a minimum, lenders will want to see pay stubs from the past 30 days showing your year-to-date income, two years of federal tax returns, and two years of W2 forms from your employer.

2. Proof of assets. You will need to present statements from your checking, savings, or investment accounts to prove that you have funds for the down payment and closing costs.

3. Good credit. Most lenders reserve the best rates for homebuyers with a credit score of 740 or above. You can still qualify for a mortgage with a lower credit score, but a good lender will also recommend ways that you can improve your credit and qualify for a better loan.

These are the biggest and most common things you will need to get pre-approved, though your lender might want to see some other documents as well.

Once you are pre-approved, the buying process will be faster, more convenient, and less stressful. Most importantly, it will make it more likely that your offer for that perfect home gets accepted.

If you have any questions for me or need any additional assistance, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.