What is Pre-Qualification?
Simply put, being pre-qualified is the first step for a serious homebuyer. To get a pre-qualification letter, you provide a bank or lender with information that allows them to see your complete financial picture. Once they have analyzed this information, the bank or lender will give you an idea of the mortgage amount you can qualify for. This information is not thoroughly verified, and as a result the mortgage amount you are approved for during pre-qualification is not guaranteed. To put yourself in the strongest possible position when buying a home, getting pre-approved for a mortgage is the best thing next to paying cash.
What is Pre-Approval?
Pre-approval is the next step, and it involves actually filling out a mortgage application and providing a lender with detailed documentation that allows them to perform a thorough examination of your overall financial picture. Once the process is complete, you will have a letter that gives you conditional approval for a home mortgage for the amount that the lender has approved you to borrow. As you look to buy a home, this letter puts you at an advantage over other buyers who are not pre-approved.
In a seller’s market like we have here in Arlington, and Northern Virginia as a whole, getting pre-qualified and pre-approved is really important. If the home you want has received multiple offers, being pre-approved puts you in a good position to be the buyer that a seller selects.
As a Realtor® and homebuilder in Northern Virginia for over 30 years, I have strong connections with local mortgage lenders, and can help guide you through the pre-qualification and pre-approval process. If you’d like to speak with me about this process, get in touch with me anytime