A good Lender will Pre-Qualify you, a Great Lender will Pre-Approve you which means collect your documentation and actually have an automated approval and a underwriting review.
If you start 6 months early then you also have the time to interview a couple of Realtors to see if you are a match. Realtors do not want to waste their time with "looky loos" but if they are a serious Buyer then most Realtors will be all in. How do you prove that you are not a looky loo? Be honest and upfront with your Realtor. Mention to your Realtor that you are already working with a Lender and what your timeline is. There is nothing wrong with interviewing your Realtors and Lenders. The biggest names do not always translate to the best service. Hire a Realtor that is familiar to the local area where you are searching. A Great Realtor will be upfront, truthful and hard working for you. Be loyal to your Realtor once you have established a relationship. If you cannot establish a good working relationship then advise your Realtor of this and choose a new Realtor, just don't be playing games. Realtors & Lenders get so discouraged by Buyers who act like a see saw. You like loyalty, give some back. It will make your transaction flow a lot smoother.
Should you need a Great Lender, feel free to contact me at the information below.
Eddie W. de Leon
Senior Loan Officer
949-777-2109 - Direct
951-210-2101 - Cell/Text
Some people hesitate to trust their information to the companies they don't know. Being in mortgage lending since 1986, I established very simple criteria how to find a right mortgage professional. It includes two major basics:
1. Proper licensing - in California go to http://www.dre.ca.gov. More to it, according to a new federal regulations enacted in 2010 all residential Loan Officers must have NMLS Number, federal license/ endorsement to their DRE license. In order to obtain this license you have to pass two exams: national and state. Apparently not everyone could do it, number of loan officers in California alone went down from a few hundred thousands to a few thousands.
2. References - real people, realtors, buyers, sellers, people you can talk about this particular loan officer and mortgage company, and possibly mortgage business as well.
Like I said before I have been a real estate broker and a mortgage lender since 1986. I don't need to see your personal information to talk to you about mortgages. To see our company references and our rates please visit our website http://www.calsunmortgage.com, or e-mail me directly:
firstname.lastname@example.org. I am president and owner of CalSun Mortgage.
You can do all the research you want, but there is nothing like a recommendation from someone you trust.
Good Luck, it has been a crazy market this year, but the reward of finding and buying your first home is an amazing thing.