Underwriting is an important part of the mortgage process in New Jersey. It’s also one of the most “mysterious” stages for first-time home buyers and borrowers. How does the mortgage underwriting process work in New Jersey? What should you, as a borrower, be doing during this stage? These are some of the common questions we’ll answer today.
Basic Steps in the Mortgage Process
To start with, let’s place underwriting into the broader context of the mortgage lending process. While this process can vary slightly from one borrower to the next, it usually follows a series of steps. Underwriting typically falls somewhere in the middle.
Here are the basic steps home buyers go through when getting a mortgage loan:
- The home buyer / borrower completes a loan application.
- The home buyer gets pre-approved for a certain loan amount.
- The buyer locates a suitable property and makes an offer to buy.
- The mortgage company orders an appraisal to determine the market value.
- A title search is performed to ensure there aren’t any liens or claims on the home.
- The mortgage loan file moves into the underwriting state, for a thorough review.
- The underwriter approves the loan, and the buyer moves on to the closing.
- The loan is funded at or near the closing day (sometimes a few days later).
So, getting back to the question at hand. What happens during ...
Are you thinking about buying a home in New Jersey this summer? If so, you’ll have plenty of company.
Real estate markets across the state are still highly competitive, as we enter the last month of spring 2018. In many markets, this competition is being driven by tight supply along with steady demand from buyers.
Here are three things you should know about buying a home in New Jersey, in summer 2018:
1. Rising mortgage rates could create urgency among buyers.
Average mortgage rates have risen steadily (more or less) since the start of 2018. There have been a few week-to-week declines during that time. But overall, it has been a mostly upward trend. This is based on the weekly mortgage industry survey compiled by Freddie Mac.
On May 24, the government-sponsored corporation reported that the average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage loan rose to 4.66%. What’s notable about this is that rates haven’t been that high in a long time. In fact, you’d have to go back to May of 2011 to find average rates at that level.
For those planning to buy a home in New Jersey during summer 2018, this is an important trend to watch. It could add a sense of urgency to the house-hunting process, at least for those buyers who need to use mortgage loans to finance their purchases.
The bottom line is that home buyers might want to consider buying sooner rather than later, due to the potential for rising housing costs and ...
From day one, parents help their children with almost everything. But sometimes even adult “children” need a helping hand. This is often the case when it comes to buying a home. Fortunately, there are several things parents can do to help their children buy a first home in New Jersey.
Common Obstacles to Homeownership
For some would-be home buyers, the financial path to buying a house can seem overwhelming at first. Qualifying for a mortgage loan. Coming up with a down payment. These things can seem like insurmountable obstacles to a first-time purchaser.
It’s common for home buyers in New Jersey to get a helping hand from their parents. Consider the evidence. A 2016 survey from the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) found that nearly a quarter of millennial home buyers got down-payment help from a family member when buying a home. Parents were listed as the most common source of financial help.
According to the NAR report: “Overall, the median down payment ranged from 7 percent for millennial buyers to 21 percent for older boomers and the Silent Generation. Nearly a quarter (23 percent) of millennials cited a gift from a relative or friend – typically their parents – as a source of their down payment.”
How Parents Can Help Their Children Buy a Home
All of this begs the question: What can you, as a parent, do to help your child buy his or her first home in New Jersey? There are several ways ...
Pre-qualification and pre-approval are commonly used terms that relate to the mortgage process in New Jersey. And while they sound the same, they’re actually a bit different.
This short version is this: mortgage pre-approval in New Jersey is typically a more detailed and comprehensive review, when compared to a basic pre-qualification. Home buyers can benefit from pre-approval in several ways.
Pre-Qualification vs. Pre-Approval in New Jersey
These two terms have “pre” attached to them because they happen on the front end of the mortgage process — before the appraisal, before underwriting, and before the actual funding. It’s a way to get the ball rolling. But these two terms are not the same.
Here’s the basic difference between pre-qualification and pre-approval:
- Pre-qualification is a quick review of your financial situation, often done without any kind of supporting documents or verification. The mortgage lender estimates how much you might be able to borrow, based on the financial information (income, debts, etc.) that you’ve provided.
- Pre-approval is a more in-depth and useful process. When you get pre-approved for a mortgage loan in New Jersey, you’ll actually provide some additional documents relating to your finances. A credit check is usually performed as well. The end result is that you’ll have a more realistic, and more accurate, ...
Mention the phrase “mortgage company,” and many home buyers and homeowners think of the big national and multinational corporations.
But a local New Jersey mortgage company might offer a number of advantages you don’t find on the bigger stage. As a recent Wall Street Journal article points out, a local lender could even help you win a bidding war in a hot real estate market.
‘Going Local’ With Your Mortgage Needs
The “shop local” movement has grown steadily in recent years. These days, mindful consumers shop locally for everything from books to produce. It supports local businesses, and puts money and jobs into the local economy. It’s an economic win-win.
So why not shop locally for a mortgage loan? For home buyers and homeowners in New Jersey, working with a local mortgage company can offer several advantages.
Consumer advocates and housing experts have long encouraged mortgage shoppers to consider local lenders based in their city or state. There are several key advantages to this, and one of them has to do with the sheer size of the “big banks.”
Large, multinational mortgage companies are, well, large. The bigger the company, the more business they do. This means that you, as a borrower, might be one of thousands of customers working your way through the pipeline at a given time. So you might not get the attention or efficiency you would receive from a local ...