"Milkyway Over Lake Tahoe" - You can make the dream come true!
As a realtor, my first conversation with a prospective buyer is a mutual question and answer session. Obviously, the buyer will share what they are looking for: number of bedrooms, bathrooms, square footage, location, etc. and conclude with the price range in which they expect to look. We share back and forth, as I need to know very specific details about their priorities and perhaps why certain things are, or aren't, important. As we gain focus and direction, there is one task the buyer must complete before a search can begin in earnest. They must get pre-approved for a loan.
A loan pre-approval puts a buyer, and their realtor, on the right track. There are many factors involved in a lender's decision making process, and when it comes down to it, they are in charge. They want to loan you money. That is how they make their income. However, they are no longer taking what they consider to be high or unsafe risks. It's their job to make sure you are a reasonably safe investment for them, and to what degree they are willing to invest in you. All in all, this is generally a safeguard for you, the borrower, as well.
The list below is a portion of what the lender will ask to see. They will also look at things like your credit score/history, and will need to know about the amount of cash you have readily available for a down payment. While this can seem overwhelming, being diligent with the details and getting pre-approved at the very beginning of the process will make your life much easier. You will have a realistic idea of your actual budget (which may not be in line with what you believe you can afford each month). This in turn enables you, and your realtor, to spend time searching for homes you most likely can obtain. You don't want to be disappointed by looking at homes that are out of reach. Nor do you want to miss out on THE house because the seller wants a pre-approval letter with your offer, which another buyer has in hand.
Here is an initial list of what to gather for your first meeting with a lender. They will be more specific and guide you through the process:
Previous 2 years federal tax returns (all pages) along with any W2's, K1's and 1099's.
Previous 2 years partnership or corporation returns, if applicable, with W2's.
Current pay stub covering past 30 days.
Profit and Loss statement for previous year if applicable.
Profit and Loss statement for any business income, if applicable, year to date.
2 months bank statements: checking, savings, retirement (all pages).
Copy of any mortgage statement if applicable.
Copy of tax and fire insurance bill on any property owned.
This is a start.....
I hope this sheds a little light on a very exciting, and sometimes intimidating process. As a realtor, it is my job to help guide my clients through the home buying process. While sharing this information is helpful, I am not a loan professional. I can help move you in the right direction, and am happy to help you connect with a loan professional that is experienced, respected and successful here in my region.
If you are considering either buying or selling a property in the South Lake Tahoe region, or know someone who is, I would be happy to discuss your real estate needs. I am a licensed Realtor in both California & Nevada. Along with Lake Tahoe, I extend my services over the hill into the Carson Valley.
I look forward to helping you with your real estate goals.
Enjoy the View!
Realtor (CA & NV)
Realty World Lake Tahoe
949 Tahoe Keys Blvd.
South Lake Tahoe, CA 96158