Start A Green File
A Green File is an essential collection of your financial documents that will be required by your lender, regardless of the loan type. It should include copies of your bank statements, investment statements, credit card statements, auto loans, recent pay stubs, and two years of tax returns. These documents provide crucial information about your financial history and stability, and lenders will need to review them thoroughly before approving your loan. Having these documents organized and readily available will make the loan application process much smoother and quicker, so it's important to gather them together before applying for a loan.
Check Your Credit Rating
Credit scoring systems have been in place for centuries and have undergone numerous changes and updates over the years. The current range of credit scores is between 400 and 800, with a score of 620 or higher considered "good" and a score of 680 or higher considered "premium." Having a high credit score can potentially help secure a lower interest rate on loans and other financial products. Despite the changes in technology and the economy, maintaining a good credit score remains an important part of managing one's finances.
To determine your credit rating, you can contact any of the three major credit reporting agencies listed below. If you need to improve your credit score, ask your lender for advice on how to do so. Moving forward, it's important to treat your credit with the utmost care and responsibility, as it can greatly impact your financial future:
Savings & Debt
Try to save up money for your down payment, closing costs (including appraisal, miscellaneous fees, escrow, title insurance, etc.), and inspection expenses when purchasing real estate. It's also a good idea to pay off any existing revolving or high-interest rate debts such as credit cards to improve your financial standing.
Toe The Line
Making significant changes like changing careers, moving money around, or purchasing expensive items is not advisable when trying to secure a loan. Lenders prefer stability and consistency in the financial records of potential borrowers. Thus, it is wise to consult with a lender beforehand to determine the best course of action before making any significant changes that may impact your loan application.
If you are tempted to buy a big ticket item, consider the following:
|A $500 a month debt payment (like a credit card or auto loan) could lower the amount of home you can afford by about $83,000! *|
* Based on a 30 year mortgage at 6% interest.