Buying a home is an exciting time, but the process of actually getting the home loan can be frustrating for many buyers. Between the endless mounds of paperwork and the lack of control you feel, the loan process can be intricate and complicated. You can gain a sense of control as a homebuyer during this process by taking an active role in researching and funding one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make.

Here’s a look at the home loan process simplified:

Get a Good Faith Estimate. This will show your interest rate, loan amount, fees, and monthly payment. Without this information, it’s difficult to get a loan officer. Only get a Good Faith Estimate when you are sure you are ready to go house shopping.

Choose your loan officer. You should know the cost of financing before you pick a loan officer.

Get preapproved for financing. This involves a credit check and documentation of your income and assets.

Make an offer. This is when you can have fun and go home shopping. Once you have negotiated your price, you can finalize the purchase and sale agreement.  

Lock in your interest rate. You want to secure your interest rate while your loan is in process.

Gather the paperwork your loan officer requests. Make sure you have pay stubs, W2s, bank statements, etc. ready to go.

Wait for the underwriter to review your loan. They may need additional information from you, so provide what they need as quickly as possible so that you don’t hold up the final stages in the loan process.

Sign the loan documents and wait until the loan funds. Then, you get the keys to your very own home!

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