So you’ve decided to purchase a home. Although this is an exciting time in your life, it can also be a scary proposition. Where do you start? How much will it cost? How long will it take? Equity Bank is here to help you through every step of the mortgage process so that you aren’t blindsided by unexpected turns.


Pre-qualification

The first step recommended for home buyers is mortgage pre-qualification. Pre-qualification helps you to understand your spending limits and therefore narrow your search to homes that fall within the range of the loan. It can also provide you with a leg up on other home buyers in the market by demonstrating you are serious about purchasing a home. Whether you are looking to purchase a home immediately, or just to get a head start on the process, it’s never too early to talk to your lending specialist about pre-qualifying for your home loan.


Mortgage Program Selection

Once you are pre-qualified and in the process of searching for your home, it is beneficial to begin discussions with your lending specialist about the various mortgage programs available to you. Although it’s impossible to know your future with 100% certainty, think about your preference for the term of the loan, the amount of money required for a down payment under each program, as well as whether you want a fixed-interest or adjustable-rate mortgage. Your Equity Bank lending specialist will take these preferences into consideration when helping you select the program that works best for your situation.


Application 

After the searching is done and you’ve found the perfect home, it is time to start the formal application process. The mortgage application will require that you provide documentation pertaining to work history, previous residences, and financial accounts. For more information about what to expect and what you should bring to the mortgage application meeting, check out our Mortgage Checklist


Processing & Verification

Once the mortgage application paperwork has been filled out, your lending specialist will submit your application for processing and verification. During this phase, the processor will organize your application and verify the information you submitted is complete and accurate. They will also order additional documentation required to make a final decision, such as a home appraisal, and any title work that the underwriter will need to review the application. The processor will organize everything into one package and send it to the Underwriter for a final decision. This phase is also when you will want to complete a professional home inspection of the property you are considering.


Underwriting & Appraisal

Ultimately, the Underwriter is the key decision maker as they will review everything that you have filled out and submitted thus far. They will verify with the appraiser and title company that the house is a sound structural and financial investment. The underwriter will communicate with the lending specialist if a problem needs to be addressed or if you are approved for your loan. If a problem does arise, time will be given to address the concerns before it goes back to the underwriter for further review.


Approval

Once approved for your mortgage you will have three days to review the paperwork and complete a final walk through of the house to verify that the house is in proper condition. After this period you will meet one more time for the closing meeting.


Closing

You’re getting close to the finish line! The closing meeting is the last step in buying a home where all legal documents related to the mortgage loan and the transfer of the property are signed. This is also the time where you and the seller, if applicable, pay closing related costs. Once completed and the paperwork is signed, you will receive the title to the property and the keys to your new home!


If you have any questions about the mortgage process, please feel free to reach out to an Equity Bank loan specialist or give us a call. Buying a home is something special, and we would love to be the first to welcome you home.


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