Savvy buyers in today’s hot South Charlotte NC real estate market are PREPARED to begin their home buying journey! This means partnering with a successful South Charlotte Buyer Agent, and solidifying your financial position. To put you in the strongest negotiating position possible, I strongly recommend that you speak with a trusted mortgage advisor to determine how much home you can afford BEFORE you start looking for homes. There’s nothing more deflating than falling in love with a home which you are not qualified to buy! If you plan to pay cash for your South Charlotte NC home, you can proceed to looking at homes with your South Charlotte NC buyer agent! Most sellers will, however, require proof of funds so be prepared to provide that with your offer to purchase.
I have several trusted mortgage lenders who I would recommend highly. One of those lenders, Cunningham & Company Mortgage Bankers is has partnered with my firm, Helen Adams Realty, to offer our clients incredible loan packages. Contact Rebecca Madej, Branch Manager of Cunningham & Company with any mortgage questions – she’s awesome!
Mortgage Pre-Approval Letter
Your lender will provide you with a mortgage pre-approval letter stating that you are conditionally approved to buy a home at a certain price. Most South Charlotte NC home sellers will require such a pre-approval letter from a reputable lender before they will even consider your offer to purchase their home. In order to obtain a mortgage pre-approval letter, your lender will pull your credit scores and discuss your income and debt. Be forthcoming, because all of this information will be verified in the mortgage process! If your credit scores are not in great shape, read my blog post entitled “Your Credit Score – What You Should know Before Buying a Home in Charlotte NC.”
The Mortgage Process
Because of the recent financial crisis in our country, banks are more strict than ever before in approving mortgages. The pendulum has swung 180° in the opposite direction, from approving mortgages for anyone who could fog a mirror to verifying EVERYTHING in your financial life. Your lender will discuss what types of documentation you must provide – do what they say, and do it in a timely manner! When the bank’s underwriters ask for clarification or more details – provide it! Just remember – you are not alone! Lenders are just as stringent with everyone else!
Here are some of the types of documentation you may be asked to provide to your lender at loan application. Ask your lender if there is any additional information required before you meet:
- 2 – 3 most recent bank statements (ALL pages, even if blank)
- 2-3 most recent paycheck stubs
- Past 2 years W-2s
- Copy of social security numbers (borrower and co-borrower)
- Copy of NC Drivers Licenses (Borrower and Co-Borrower)
- List all checking account information
- List all Savings Account Information
- All credit card account information
- Identify any past or present credit concerns
- Be prepared to explain any large deposits or withdrawals in your accounts over the past 3 months
- Identify any deposits or withdrawals expected during the buying process
- If you are taking your down payment/closing costs funds from another account, be prepared to document the withdrawal as well as the deposit into your checking account
Appraisal and Underwriting
Before your mortgage lender will approve your loan, an appraisal will be ordered by an independent appraiser (this is a buyer expense). The lender wants to make sure that the South Charlotte NC home being financed is valued at the purchase price. If the home appraises, the loan moves into the underwriting process, in which underwriters review all of your documentation. The underwriters may ask for additional information or clarification from you – give it to them! But once you are past the underwriters, you are in the home stretch! Your mortgage advisor will keep you informed of your loan’s status.
Loan Commitment and Closing
After all conditions have been satisfied with your loan, your mortgage lender will issue loan COMMITMENT, and will send closing instructions and wire your mortgage funds to your real estate attorney. Everything is in place for you to buy your new home! You will need to bring a certified check to closing which will cover your down payment and closing expenses. You must also bring your drivers license to closing! Once your home purchase is settled and your new deed and deed of trust are recorded at the courthouse, you are a new owner of a home in South Charlotte NC .