How to get Pre-Qualified for a Mortgage – Things You Wish You Knew

How to get Pre-Qualified for a Mortgage – Things You Wish You Knew
How to get Pre-Qualified for a Mortgage – Things You Wish You Knew

Buying a home is a huge investment. For most would-be homeowners, this is going to be the biggest single purchase you make in your life, and there are tons of things to consider.

How many bedrooms do you need? Which neighborhoods do you like? How important is the commute time? All of these big decisions will be informed by the answer to one question: what exactly is my budget? Getting pre-qualified for a mortgage is a great way to find out.

Compared to mortgage pre-approval, getting pre-qualified for a mortgage is a speedy process. Essentially, mortgage pre-qualification is a rough estimate of your borrowing capability. Pre-qualification is conditional and does not serve as a guarantee that your loan application will be approved.

With that said, pre-qualification is a great way to gauge your eventual budget and speed up the eventual loan approval process.

How to get pre-qualified for a mortgage:

  • Submit Your Info Online

Most financial institutions have a quick pre-qualification form that can be completed using self-reported info. Unlike pre-approval, you will not have to back this information up with proof. This automates the process, but the loan amount and interest you pre-qualify for will be conditional on you eventually supporting your claims. Pre-qualification does not guarantee pre-approval.

  • Speak to a Loan Officer or Mortgage Broker

After coming up with a rough estimate, the next step is talking to a loan officer or mortgage broker to better understand your situation. Loan officers work directly for the lender, while mortgage brokers are independent professionals that help house hunters find mortgage products tailored to their needs.

  • Completely Lost? Talk to Your Realtor

If you have a realtor, he or she will know how to get pre-qualified for a mortgage and should be able to explain the steps to you in detail. As real estate professionals, your realtor can tap into their network and refer you to a qualified mortgage broker.

  • Shop Around for the Best Fit

Pre-qualification forms might be automated but they aren’t identical. Consider getting pre-qualified from several lenders before starting the official loan application process.

How to get pre-qualified for a mortgage – final thoughts:

When it comes to mortgage approval, pre-qualification is just the first step. It’s a helpful tool for understanding your situation and kickstarting the process, but it doesn’t guarantee your loan amount. If you want something more concrete, consider getting pre-approved.


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