Pre-Qualified vs Pre-Approval

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If you’re thinking of buying a home, you will come across many confusing terms.  For today, let’s tackle “pre-qualified” and “pre-approval”.

Pre-Qualified – A loan officer has taken some information from the borrower, and made a tentative; simply denotes a process that has not yet been underwritten to the guidelines of a particular lending institution (

Whew…what a moutful!!  Here is the breakdown:  1) you want a house, 2) you call, text or e-mail your income, social security number & job history to a mortgage officer, 3) the mortgage officer runs your credit and debt to income ratio, 4) the mortgage officer gives you a certain amount that you “could” qualify for

Pre-Approval – Buyers can then get a letter of pre approval from the lender, and when shopping for a home can have possibly an advantage over others because they can show the seller that they are more likely to be able to buy the house (

That’s easier…  Here’s the breakdown:  1) you want a house, 2) you sit down with a mortgage officer and complete an application, hand them your W-2’s, social security number & job history, 3) the mortgage officer sends your paperwork to underwriting (detailed prcoess used to asses your eligibility for a loan), 4) the mortgage officer gives you a pre-approval letter

Why is a pre-approval better than pre-qualified?  Simply put, it gives you an advantage over your competitors (other Buyers) 😀  Why?  It allows you to find the home of your dreams, and to make an offer that is not contingenc upon financing (you’re already pre-approved!!) vs another Buyer who is pre-qualified, or worse yet, hasn’t even spoken to a mortgage officer!! :gasp:


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