Excellent question Kd,
Many people that shouldn't have been approved for a loan in the first place were approved, and most of them by brokers not bankers. Those loan officers didn't act as "counselors" but just looked at the situation from an immediate situation.
Stricter guidelines exist now where borrowers cannot do easily a loan based on stated income only. They have to prove that they are receiving the income and where it's coming from and how long they've been getting it. This makes it more difficult on self-employed or people that don't report all their income.
It is a good idea to get approved for a loan now and know where you stand financially, even though you are not looking to purchase until August, and if there are any issues that need to be addressed, you will have plenty of time to take care of them before August.
I will be very happy to assist you in that matter as well as helping you find your perfect home.