We went live with Jordan Nutter (@anutterhomeloan), licensed loan officer at NFM lending, to get answers to all your burning questions. We've compiled the top Q&As from our conversation with Jordan to give you a better understanding of the pre-approval process. And if you want to hear the full conversation, head over to our Instagram page @be_choosi.
Q: What happens if you have bad credit? Are you SOL?
A: No. Most lenders have different requirements when it comes to minimum credit scores. For example, some lenders may go down as low as 500, but additional guidelines may apply, such as higher down payments or lower debt capacity.
Q: What happens if you want to improve your credit in six months to a year before buying a house?
A: Many lenders, including ours, offer an internal credit enhancement team that can help you improve your credit without having to pay for credit repair companies. However, you need to be cautious as some credit companies may advise you to stop making payments, which could harm your credit score and disqualify you from getting a loan.
Q: Can anyone improve their credit score within a year?
A: It depends on the individual's circumstances. For some, paying off their credit card balance on time can significantly improve their credit score, while for others, removing collections or late payments from their credit report may require more effort and time.
Q: Should you shop around for multiple lenders when getting pre-approved?
A: Yes, it's always a good idea to shop around and interview different lenders to ensure you are getting the best loan for your particular situation. It's important to note that the interest rate is not the only factor to consider, and the lender should properly advise you on the best loan to go with based on your credit, debt-to-income ratio, and other factors.
Q: Does getting pre-approved by multiple lenders hurt your credit score?
A: Not if you do it within a short period. Generally, you have a 30-day window from the first lender pulling your credit until the last one. However, if you pull it again outside this window, it could affect your credit score.
Q: How long does a pre-approval last?
A: The pre-approval letter itself usually lasts for 30 days, and your credit is good for 120 days. However, many lenders will check in with you and make sure nothing has changed in your financial situation before issuing a new pre-approval letter.
Q: Does getting pre-approved mean you will get the loan?
A: No. Getting pre-approved means that the lender has reviewed your financial information and determined that you are eligible for a loan based on their guidelines. However, things can change, and you may not qualify for the loan if your financial situation changes.
Q: Does getting pre-approved lock in the interest rate?
A: No. When you get pre-approved, the lender will put the interest rate based on the market for that particular day, but it could change at any time. Once you go under contract, generally within 30 days of closing, the lender will lock in the interest rate.
Q: Why does it sometimes take longer to get pre-approved?
A: Getting pre-approved requires sending your file to an underwriter, and it may take longer depending on the volume of loans the lender is processing. If you're at the end of the month, it may take longer as it's generally busier.
Q: Are you tied to your lender once you get pre-approved?
A: No. You're not tied to your lender until you sign off on the loan documents at the closing table. It's recommended that you pick your loan officer before going under contract to avoid delays.
We're excited to announce that each week we'll be hosting IG Lives with experts in various fields to provide you with valuable information and insights. Stay tuned to our socials to find out who's next and what topic we'll be covering next.
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