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What Documentation Is Needed When Applying For A Loan?


Many times borrowers that are doing a refinance or home purchase don’t realize all the documentation that is needed when applying for a loan. It’s not that the mortgage broker wants to irritate you to see if you know where you social security card is located, or if have your tax returns on hand and in order. These items are crucial and required for all home loans. In fact, most home loans could be completed much faster if all the documentation is provided in a timely manner when requested.

The idea behind this blog post today, is to share valuable information to borrowers about how to create the perfect loan file. We share an article by Mark Greene with our clients when we process their loan because it perfectly explains why so much documentation is needed to process a loan.

What things can you expect a mortgage broker to ask you for?

Be prepared to have the following:Documentation needed for home loan

  1. Most recent one month of pay stubs
  2. Most recent 2 years of W2’s
  3. Most recent 2 years of tax returns
  4. Most recent 2 months bank statements for ALL your bank accounts
  5. Your driver’s license and social security card

These are the items needed for a basic loan approval. More complicated files depending on the borrower’s history have to include:

  1. Divorce decrees
  2. Child support documentation
  3. Self-employed borrowers need profit & loss statements
  4. Real Estate owned documentation

The list can go on and on depending on each borrower’s credit profile and history, but this is just to give you an idea of what is necessary.

Why is all this documentation needed?

Well, the lender is giving you a hefty loan and they need to be 100% sure that you are a person that will pay the loan back on time. They need to make sure you have the assets on hand and make enough income to support the payment.

Mark Greene makes a perfect statement stating, “If the lender asks for a specific document, give them exactly what they are asking for, not what “should be OK,” – because it won’t be.”

We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. This is so true in this industry. Lenders are very specific about what they request, and won’t approve your loan until you provide exactly what they asked for.

This isn’t to intimidate you in purchasing or refinancing a home, it’s meant to prepare you. Work with your mortgage consultant and loan processor and provide the documentation they request. If you aren’t sure what something is, it’s better to ASK than to ASSUME; it will help you from doing things twice. Hoping this information will prepare you and give you a better understanding of what documentation is needed when applying for a loan.

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Questions To Ask Your Mortgage Lender


In a newsletter we mailed to our clients, we provided 4 questions to ask your mortgage lender before signing their documents. These are the basic questions that help you determine if you are working with the right lender.

1.  Do you have a variety of loan programs to fit my cash flow and expected length of ownership needs?

If you’re going to live in your new home for less than five years, you may want to consider an adjustable rate mortgage or “ARM.” With an ARM your payments will be lower, but they will go up according to the terms of the loan. If you’re going to live in your new home for over five years, a traditional fixed-rate mortgage may be a better plan.

With whatever lender you choose, you should have the ability to have multiple options to fit your lending needs. If you are a first time home buyer and need down payment assistance, be sure to ask your lender what down payment programs are available. The most popular is the 3.5% down payment with the FHA loan. An experienced lender will give you options to discuss what will be in your best interest.

2.  Do you offer written mortgage pre-approvals, not just pre-qualifications?

A pre-qualification is usually a Lender’s opinion of your eligibility for a loan.  If you ask to be pre-approved, the lender will actually submit your job and credit history to an underwriter and get a conditional approval for a loan and a loan commitment.  The advantage of having a pre-approval is that it will make your offer to buy a home stronger and it will usually allow you to close on the home faster.

At Stateline Funding Corp., we issue pre-approvals. We never let our buyers make offers without have the guarantee that they qualify for the loan.

3.  Do you have the ability to handle difficult credit history?

Many Lenders will only work with you if you have perfect credit, and if a problem comes up, they won’t help you.  Make sure your lender has reviewed and received approval for you and your specific credit history.

If you have credit issues, ask your lender what steps you need to take in order to be qualified to purchase a home. If they give you steps, make sure you follow them so you can be able to purchase sooner than later.

4.  Is the rate you quoted me the rate I’ll get at closing?

Many Lenders advertise their rates in the paper and in homes magazines.  These are called “teaser rates” in the industry.  The name says it all. After they’ve got you committed to using them, many lenders then tell you what the “real” rate will be.  By this time, it’s too late for you to do anything about it.

This happens all the time in our industry. At Stateline Funding Corp. we monitor real time rates. We are able to understand what affects the interest rates and changes them on a daily, even hourly basis. We have even had prospective clients experience this teaser with other company’s, but they are too involved in the process to back out.

We always deliver on whatever we promise. We are not in the industry to manipulate home buyers, we are here to help. You should be working with a mortgage lender that cares about you as an individual, not a number.

So remember as you are looking for a mortgage lender to ask these 4 important questions before you begin the process.

How To Choose A Mortgage Lender


Finding the right mortgage lender is more than just selecting the person that offers the lowest interest rate. There are several factors you should consider before choosing a mortgage lender.

Certified Mortgage Planning Specialist

A good mortgage lender should be able to discuss your mortgage payment in detail with you to help it fit your financial situation. They should also be able to offer advice in ways to help improve your credit if your score is too low, or other issues occur on your credit report.

More importantly, a great mortgage lender would get you a pre-approval, not a pre-qualification before letting you look for a home. There is a big difference. A pre-qualification is based on their opinion and brief financial information gathered from you that you qualify. A pre-approval, specifically with Stateline Funding Corp., guarantees you are approved to purchase a home.

Interest rate

Interest rates are important. However, what many consumers don’t realize is interest rates change daily. For example, you may get a quote from one mortgage lender on a Monday, and the next Tuesday you get a quote that is higher. This is typically not the lender’s doing, but due to the fact that the interest rate changed within those 24 hours.

This is why you need to work with a certified mortgage planning specialist who understands what causes the interest rates to fluctuate. When selecting a mortgage lender, you want to have a mortgage planning specialist who knows how to monitor interest rates in real time and watches them daily to guarantee the best rate possible.

Reputation & Reviews

Seek advice and recommendations from family and friends. Referrals are a great way to find a mortgage lender that you can trust. You can also read reviews online. At Stateline Funding Corp., we encourage our clients to leave a review after each transaction so others can learn from their experience with our company. A company should be transparent and have real reviews from clients who have experienced doing business with the company.

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