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What is the Difference Between a Pre-Qualification and a Pre-Approval?


Buying a home is a big step and securing a loan for that home can be a daunting task if you have never done it before.

Choosing a lender can be a difficult task. Your real estate agent can help you choose a lender that will have the right programs and mortgage product for you. Agents work with many lenders and are a great resource for the ones that work hard for their clients and those that are difficult to work with. Once you have chosen your preferred lender the first step in shopping for a home is obtaining a pre-approval letter to submit with your offer when you find that perfect home! Trust your agent to help you find the right fit for you.

Some lenders only offer a pre-qualification letter to submit with a purchase contract on a home. Others dig a little deeper and offer a pre-approval letter. The main difference between the two is that a pre-qualification is a look at income and monthly debt payments. A pre-approval takes that several steps further and asks for pay stubs, W-2s, tax returns, income, credit analysis, and source of down payment to prove your ability to afford the mortgage.

When buying a home in a competitive market like ours in Central Ohio, having a pre-approval can mean the difference between your offer being taken seriously and not. An offer submitted to a seller with just a pre-qualification is risky for that seller to accept because there is a chance that once the buyer’s credit is reviewed that they will not be able to afford the price of the home in question. Having a pre-approval letter means that the buyer’s credit has been reviewed and they are ready to apply for their loan as soon as a purchase offer is accepted.

Having a knowledgeable real estate agent can mean that you have the right tools to get the dream home that you love! CARLETON REALTY has over two hundred agents that are experienced and trained to help you find the lender that will work for you!

Information about pre-approvals obtained from Sue Reichard of State Bank –

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CARLETON REALTY has been helping clients buy, sell, and manage real estate including residential and commercial properties throughout Ohio for over 25 years. With over 200 agents and 8 administrative staff members working under an experienced licensed broker, our team offers extensive expertise and knowledge about your local real estate market. Our agents come from diverse backgrounds, and collectively speak over 20 different languages. Our team has the ability to help clients feel educated and empowered throughout real estate transactions who may have otherwise needed a translator.

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