What Is a Mortgage, Anyway?

What Is a Mortgage, Anyway?

“Mortgage” is a fairly common word in most of our vocabularies, but if asked to define it, we would likely all have very different answers. If you are new to home-buying you may not have an answer at all, but instead just know it’s something you need.

Defining what a mortgage is and the process that goes into obtaining and maintaining one can help refine all of our answers and make everything about a mortgage feel a little less daunting.

The Process

While most of us likely think of our house payments when the word mortgage comes up, a mortgage is defined as an agreement between yourself and a lender and there is a process involved with securing one. When you work with a lender like us, we will break down the process into simple and clear steps, so you know exactly what is happening at every turn.

The most basic way to look at the mortgage process: You are ready to buy a house and you need to know what you can afford.

A pre-approval for a mortgage, while not required to house-hunt, is the best way to know exactly where and what to look at. This is also helpful for understanding what kind of monthly payments you would be getting yourself into with each house that you tour.

Once you are ready to purchase a home, you will actually finalize your mortgage in order to close on your property. This part of the process is where home-buying is put on paper—the actual agreement you are entering into.

When you are at this point, it is our job to get things handled quickly and efficiently so you can focus on moving into your new forever home.

But How Do I Really Get One?

OK, so that is a super-simplified version of the mortgage process, and it can’t be that easy for everyone, right? Actually, it can!

With a little prep work on your end, you can walk into our office knowing just what to expect.

Your credit score has a lot to do with what kind of mortgage you will qualify for, so consider checking it before you start the pre-approval process. You are entitled by law to one free credit report each year.

Knowing where you stand will help give you a better idea of what to expect when you are seeking a mortgage. If your credit isn’t where you want it to be, there are lots of ways to build it up so that you don’t have to settle for less house than you need.

You will also want to have verifiable proof of consistent income, which means bringing a copy of your taxes or pay stub with you when you are ready to work with a lender. Taking the time to consider how much of a down payment, if any, you are able to supply is another step toward getting the mortgage you want. While there is a mortgage for everyone regardless of what you can do upfront, when you are willing to put up some dollars right away, it can help your overall rates.

A mortgage doesn’t have to be the thing you dread starting, or the thing you dread paying each month. Work with a lender who wants to walk you through every step and is willing to explain as much as necessary to get you the house you need.

And the next time someone asks, you can tell them more than they ever wanted to know about what a mortgage really is!

Ready to start the mortgage process, or just want to learn more about it? Contact us, and we can get you started.

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