Shopping for a home without first getting pre-approved is like going shopping without your wallet. During a pre-approval, the lender will verify your finances, so they can decide how much you can borrow.
Pre-Qualification vs. Pre-Approval
You’ve probably heard of a pre-qualification and a pre-approval, but one is a lot better than the other. If you’re serious about buying a home, skip straight to the pre-approval. It requires a credit check and financial documentation. Because the lender actually verifies your financial information, it’s a lot more robust than a pre-qualification.
Here are some of the advantages of getting a pre-approval before you shop for a home:
- When you get a pre-approval, the lender tells you how much money you’re likely to be approved for (keep in mind that a pre-approval is never a commitment to lend). This way, you can shop for homes that best fit your budget.
- Because the lender has already gone through your financial documentation and pulled your credit, a pre-approval makes it more likely they’ll be able to approve your loan once you find the home you’re looking for.
- A pre-approval shows all parties that you’re not just window shopping. You’re serious about buying a home, and that strengthens your offer.
Now that you’ve been pre-approved, it’s time to start shopping for your dream home.