While it is important to get a pre-approval before you start shopping for a home, it also begs a great question: How long is a mortgage pre-approval good for? It’s crucial to be aware of this since going through the process of shopping for a home (and finally settling on one) could take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months.
Depending on which lender you decide on and their guidelines, it is typically between 60-90 days. Long story short – the life of a pre-approval may vary. Though here at Movement, our pre-approvals are good for a total of 90 days.
You can, however, request for an extension on how long it’s valid for. In order to do so, you will need to be able to provide updates to your documentation toward the end of that initial expiration. Underwriters will need this to verify everything is still in order. This can generally be taken care of on the same day that you provide the documents in.
In order to get you ready to move forward, here’s some information to help you obtain your pre-approval decision.
Pre-Qualification vs Pre-Approval
First and foremost, we want to make sure you understand this: A pre-approval is not the same as a pre-qualification. A pre-qualification is an individual’s “best guess” at what you might qualify for, yet only based on a quick review of your information. A pre-approval, however, has actually gone through an underwriter (the actual decision-maker on an approval). They’re giving you a determination on your loan-worthiness that is based on facts. A pre-approval will actually carry more weight with a seller.
How to start the pre-approval process
If you’re wondering, the industry standard takes one to three days to issue a mortgage pre-approval letter. However, at Movement, it is our goal to provide you a fully underwritten pre-approval within six hours of receiving your completed application*, if qualified. In order to get started on the process, all you need to do is connect with your local loan officer. They will guide you on what you need to provide. If you need a solid, local loan officer to connect with and get started, click here in order to find one near you.
How I should time my pre-approval
We’ve determined that a mortgage pre-approval is good for approximately 90 days (give or take). Knowing this, it’s best to start the pre-approval process when you’re confident about purchasing a home. If your credit could use some boosting, make sure you’re working toward credit repair. Look into debts that may be weighing your score down.
You can always at least start with an initial conversation with a loan officer as well. They can point you in the right direction of what you need to do before actually submitting your application. Feel free to also use our free mortgage calculator in order to save you time upfront in case you’d like a quick glimpse into a possible estimate. However, in order to get the clearest picture of what you can afford, it will be best to contact a loan officer near you when you’re ready to proceed.
What do I need for a pre-approval?
There’s a fair amount of documentation that is traditionally needed in order to get a pre-approval issued. You will need items such as:
- Pay stubs
- Bank statements
- Verification of employment
- Photo ID
- And possibly more
Luckily, Movement has worked on making this process easier for you. You can utilize our EasyApp with our loan officers in order to sync and electronically upload most of these documents. Through a simple conversation with a loan officer, you can figure out what type of loan will suit your situation best, and what additional documentation will be needed from there.
Buying a home is a big step. It takes weighing out big decisions while making sure you have certain items in order. While looking like a strenuous process, it doesn’t have to be as tough or stressful as it may initially seem. And we’re here to help you along the way.
If you have any further questions or are ready to get your pre-approval decision, contact your local loan officer today.