Trying to get pre-approved for a mortgage?
Seeking to understand the mortgage pre-approval process?
Looking to buy your first home?
Whatever your home loan goals are, it will take a team to accomplish them. Think of your home loan process as a puzzle. There are many pieces, and they must all fit together in order to work. As an experienced loan officer who walks homebuyers through the mortgage approval process, I’ve put together countless puzzles. I know how to make the pieces fit together perfectly to create your desired picture.
However, in order for me to put it together, I also have to participate in a scavenger hunt to find all the pieces! That’s essentially what lenders and loan officers have to do. And if any piece of the puzzle is missing, or even late, then you will not get the loan you desire.
The Devil is in the Details
If I say to a consumer, “I need your tax returns. I need every page and every schedule,” the client might only send in the first page of the tax return, saying, “This shows you all the totals that you need. Why do you need more? That should work.”
However, lenders do not work from totals. We need to analyze all the numbers-all the lines, all the details. In other words, we need all of the puzzle pieces to work with. Also, yes, that first page does show the total for W-2 income, but it doesn’t explain if it was from one job or five jobs or if it was from one person on the return or both–just as an example.
We need every page, every Form W-2 (Wage and Tax Statement), Form 1099 (Miscellaneous Income), Schedule K-1 for business income (if applicable), and every Internal Revenue Service (IRS) form and schedule to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. Often, lenders will get pushback from borrowers who own various businesses or have spouses operating side businesses at a loss that they forget to mention. Or they might resist submitting their K-1 or 1099 if they don’t feel it’s relevant. If there are pieces of the puzzle that are missing, the final picture won’t be clear and the loan could fall apart.
Knowledge is Power
ASK QUESTIONS! Good loan officers want you to understand every part of the process, but please know that until we have every single document we’ve requested, it’s as if we have nothing. As a loan officer, I am responsible for putting the puzzle together, but you have the pieces, so we have to work together as a team.
A loan closing smoothly comes down to teamwork between the borrower and the loan officer. It never fails; the quickest closings are the result of the most compliant customers. When choosing your loan officer, you need to find a master puzzler — someone who knows how to make the pieces fit together. And then you need to hand over the pieces so they can put them to work for you.
What do you want to learn about?
- Conventional Loans
- FHA Loans
- VA Loans
- Closing Costs
- Down Payments
- How to get approved for a home loan
- Home loan pre-approval
I’m here to help you. Stay tuned for future blog posts, which I’ve written to give you all of the information you need to make the right home loan and home-buying decisions.