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Mortgage Checklist

The complex process of getting a mortgage is made clearer by breaking it down into steps. Here's a checklist to help do just that.

  1. Determine your mortgage limit
    • Create your expense snapshot — listing all expenses in your current budget
    • Estimate potential homeowner expenses and include them in your snapshot
    • Estimate your monthly payments using an online calculator
    • Calculate your debt-to-income ratio to determine your mortgage limit
    • Decide how you will make a down payment and how much
  2. Check your credit
  3. Determine the type of loan that is best for you.
  4. Choose a lender, or several.
  5. Get pre-approved. You'll need the following information when applying:
    • Paycheck stubs for the last 30 days
    • One W-2 tax return if you've had your job for over two years, or two if otherwise
    • Recent credit card statements
    • Two bank statements over last 90 days
    • Proof of pensions, retirement, disability, or Social Security
    • Proof of income from rentals, investments, etc.
    • Proof of child support or alimony paid/received
    • Loan information on current home (if you own one)
    • 401K statements
    • Divorce decree (if applicable)
    Get a Good Faith Estimate of fees as a part of your pre-approval.
  6. Lock in your rates.
  7. Bring all documentation to the closing.
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