The 5 Steps to Getting a Mortgage

Applying for a mortgage loan to buy your dream home can seem daunting. It’s true that a lot of information goes into the decision making process, but it doesn’t have to be complicated.

Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or an experienced home owner looking to move or refinance, here at GHS our loan officers are ready to answer all your questions, and help you start your mortgage. Start the process online by creating a user account on the GHS Federal Credit Union Mortgage Center and one our trained loan specialists will reach out to you and get you started.

If you’re considering a move to a new house, check out these five main steps of getting a mortgage. Get organized and gather up all the necessary documents to work with your loan officer to have everything go smoothly.

Mortgage Pre-Approval

It might sound out of order at first, but getting pre-approved for a mortgage before you begin looking at houses is crucial. Not only will this help you determine your price range for shopping, it will also show any potential sellers that you’re serious when it comes time to make an offer. You will need bank statements, tax return information, income statements, and proper IDs. Start a file folder, a binder, or even a digital folder to keep everything together.

House Shopping

This is the fun part! Now that you know how much you can afford in a mortgage loan, you can begin looking at houses in your desired location, and put in an official offer when you find the one. The real estate agent you chose to work with will know how to structure the offer to suit your needs, like including any contingencies related to an appraisal and an inspection.

Mortgage Loan Application

This is when you’ve chosen your mortgage lender, and hand over all that paperwork you organized in the pre-approval phase so they can begin the loan estimate. The loan estimate will show the terms, the locked interest rate, and the type of loan; like conventional or government issued. You will need to provide documentation on your employment status, your income by showing 2 years’ worth of W-2 forms, your assets and debts, the new home’s property information, and finally any financial hiccups you may have experienced in the past like bankruptcy or foreclosures.

Loan Processing and Underwriting

Processing a mortgage loan takes time because there is a lot of information to go through and analyze. This is when the lender compiles all your information and opens a file for the loan and they will order an appraisal of the property to make sure it matches or is not less than the pre-approved amount from your offer. They will also take a look at the credit check that was drawn at the pre-approval stage and they’ll verify your employment. They may also order an inspection of the property, and do a title search.

This is when the loan file will be sent to underwriting and they’re the ones who make the final decision on approval. They look at what has been put together and cross-check everything. The last step is to provide proof of home-owner’s insurance, and this is to ensure that you can walk away with the keys to your new home at the closing.

Closing on Your Dream Home

Now the loan documents will be sent over to an attorney’s office, either yours or the sellers, and this is also when you’ll take a final walk-through the home to ensure there have been no changes to the property. At the closing, you’ll be required to pay any closing costs that are not part of the loan. This could also include settlement fees (or the cost of doing the loan) and prepaid expenses like homeowners or mortgage insurance. You will walk away with the closing disclosure, a promissory note, and the deed of trust.

At GHS, we’re committed to building The Relationship of a Lifetime and we’re here to help you achieve success and meet your money goals. Check out our Mortgages tab for more information.

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