Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Pre-Mortgage Application Checklist for North Shore Buyers

North Shore Home-Buying Tips
If you are gearing up to purchase a North Shore home this winter or spring, what do you think is the first step to beginning the home-buying process? Starting to search the internet for a home? Before you do that, you should get pre-approved for a mortgage loan, as sellers will take you more seriously, the process with run faster and smoother, and you’ll know exactly what your budget is.

However, applying for a mortgage loan is also not the first step. There are a few steps you should take BEFORE you apply, and as your North Shore real estate agent, I am here to share these with you:

1.  Check your credit score. Your credit score has a huge bearing on what mortgage interest rate you’ll be offered. The higher your score, the lower your rate. Your credit score is a summary of your credit history. If your score is lower than you’d hoped, check your credit report for errors, and spend time paying off debt, paying bills on time, and lifting that score up. This takes time, so the sooner you start, the better!

2.  Get your documents together. Once you apply for a mortgage loan, you’ll have to bring in a lot of financial documentation. By finding these ahead of time and making copies, you’ll be more prepared for the process. For online mortgage applications, scan these documents onto your computer. Items you will need are tax returns from the past few years, W-2s or 1099s from the past few years, bank statements from the past few months, copy of driver’s license and social security card, employer contact info, pay stubs and so on.

3.  Shop around for mortgages. Before you apply, ask around for recommendations from your real estate agent and from friends/family who have recently bought homes. Check out online reviews. Apply for mortgages from a few different sources. As long as these applications are done within a two-week period, they count as a single credit pull, so more than one won’t hurt your credit any more than just one. Studies have found that buyers who shopped around for a mortgage saved thousands of dollars during the life of their loan! It’s worth the extra time and effort if it saves you money, right?

If you have any questions, or you’re looking for recommendations on mortgage lenders, give me a call! As your North Shore real estate agent, I can answer your questions and get you started on the home-buying process. Whether searching in Glencoe, Winnetka, Highland Park, Deerfield, Northbrook, Lake Forest, Wilmette, Evanston, Glenview, Riverwoods, Bannockburn, or other North Shore communities, I can help you find the home of your dreams!

Winter is the new spring when it comes to buying. Data shows that February is the busiest month for listing clicks online. Therefore, there’s no need to wait! If you’d like to buy, start today. If you’d like to sell, competition is low and buyers are eager! Give me a call for all of your needs in the North Shore real estate market this winter!

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert

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