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  • Writer's pictureStephen Michalakos

Getting a Mortgage

So you want to become a homeowner, eh? Very wise of you! In fact, there have never been more first time buyers entering the market so you're not alone in asking simple questions. Typically I recommend that my buyers let me know that they want to enter the market first, this way I can get them in touch with some local folks that will treat them right.

I know it's easy to see a TV ad and call a national brand, but when it comes to local grants or finding you the best program or even just giving you some dang attention it's best to use your neighbors. Getting in touch with lenders will allow you to shop for the best rate and structure a budget based on your debts and incomes.

That sounds totally easy. Right? Don't worry, this isn't the part that flips a bunch of complicated terms on you. Once you have your pre-qualification, you can start house hunting, and a good agent will encourage you to at least have it before making an offer.

If you can provide this during an offer, not only will it make your seriousness known, but lenders also carry a moxie about them that shows other agents and sellers that you're the real deal. When that offer is accepted, you'll need to make full loan application.

To get started you'll need a few things:

Prepare required documents:

  • Two years of employment history, current employment status and salary are needed. Employment letters can be used to explain gaps in employment.

  • Two years of W-2s (this does not apply if self-employed) and tax returns allow the lender to be sure that your salary is high enough to make the mortgage payments every month.

  • Most recent pay stubs for the last 30 days tell the lender that you’re still earning money similar to the amount on your tax returns. (This does not apply if self-employed, but the lender will likely require a profit and loss statement.)

  • List of assets, including bank statements, let the lender know that you have the money to cover the down payment, closing costs and a reasonable emergency. 

Submit the application. Once you’ve prepared the required documents, the first step with the lender is to apply for the home loan. Of course, you will need to provide personal information, as well as information about the property you’ll be purchasing, such as the address and estimated purchase price.

Provide your documents. Submit your documents, such as pay stubs, W-2s, bank statements and employment history.

Get pre-approved in as little as 24 hours. Once your loan application is submitted, you should receive your pre-qualification in as little as 24 hours.


This process might seem daunting, but your lender will guide you through it. The process will be even easier if you know what to expect and prepare for it.

If you'd like some lender contacts that are sure to treat you right, give me a call or email me any time! Click here to contact me.

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