How to Prepare for the Final Phase of the Mortgage Process: Underwriting


You’ve completed a loan application and have provided your mortgage originator with your income and asset documents. You’re told your loan is being submitted to “underwriting”. During the stage, the information you’ve provided is being scrutinized by a person (the underwriter) to make sure that it meets your specific program guidelines and the investor/lender guidelines. 

Hopefully your mortgage originator has done a solid job with your application by addressing possible questions the underwriter may have and gathering supporting documentation. Even if your mortgage originator and you have prepared the perfect loan ap for the underwriter, additional items are often called for after the underwriters review. These additional items are referred to as “conditions” to the loan approval. 

Here are a few quick tips to help make this process a little smoother.

  • Save everything. If you’re a shredder, like me, it’s time to stop… at least until after your loan has funded. Keep your paystubs, bank statements, retirement and asset accounts – you will probably have to continue to provide updated information to the lender.
  • Be prepared to document where large deposits ($1000 or more) came from on your statements. This means providing deposit slips and/or copies of the cancelled checks.
  • Provide “all pages” of items requested unless otherwise instructed. If an underwriter sees that your bank statement shows 1 to 4 pages, and you’re missing the last page (even if it’s blank), you will be required to provide this. “All pages” also needs to be provided of your tax returns, divorce decrees, child support orders and other documentation if requested by the underwriter. Just providing pages you feel are purtinent may delay your loan approval.
  • Avoid moving funds around. You will need to show where the funds came from and just saying “can’t you see I have gazillions in this account” won’t cut it with the underwriter.
  • Do not apply for credit. This creates an “inquiry” on your credit report. Your credit report is checked prior to closing and, if you have a new inquiry on your credit report, you will have the opportunity of explaining this to the underwriter. If you do obtain new credit, your loan will need to be re-underwritten with the new debt — even if there is no payment due (such as 60 days same as cash, etc.)
  • Provide requested documents promptly
  • If you’re planning a vacation, let your mortgage originator know as soon as possible.

Quickly providing everything that is being requested will help avoid delays with the mortgage process. 

In my opinion, a professional Mortgage Originator will essentially “pre-underwrite”  you as they take your application. They know what questions to ask and what documentation to provide the underwriter.  This is much better than working with a mortgage originator who has little to no experience in closing transactions, which you will probably find at large banks or large internet lenders.

If you’re interested in getting preapproved for a mortgage on a home located anywhere in Washington, I’m happy to help you!

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