I’ve seen many blogs about pre-approvals versus pre-qualifications. While I think this is a very valid topic, I didn’t think I would find myself writing one about pre-approval versus pre-approval. I seem to be meeting quite a few Realtors lately that are unhappy with their recent experiences with other lenders with regards to the pre-approval process. While this has been great for MY business, I can’t help but feel saddened by this trend.
This morning, I received an email from a listing agent who received my pre-approval letter on behalf on my client. Not only did he attach my letter to his email as I if I hadn’t seen it before, but he proceeded to ask me if I had checked her W-2’s, tax returns, and bank statements to verify sufficient income and assets. He also asked if I checked her qualifying ratios and DU approval. While I appreciated his thoroughness and directness, I felt as though I was being interrogated. I really wanted to respond by asking: Isn’t that what pre-approval means? If it hadn’t been for the recent horror stories of pre-qualification/pre-approval letters with DTI’s well over 50% and initial bank statement and income document requests 3 weeks in to the purchase contract, I probably would have. Instead, I politely replied that I had indeed checked all of the above prior to pre-approving my client.
I’m not sure how or why some loan officers have strayed away from the basics. I understand it is not always easy and convenient to chase down the necessary documentation, but isn’t it worth it to preserve the integrity of our industry. Didn’t the not so distant crash harm the lender’s reputation enough? For those of you that continue to uphold a standard of excellence, I am proud to consider you my colleagues. For those of you that don’t, I challenge you to step up your game. I don’t want to see my pre-approval get scrutinized because someone else chose not to do their job; however, I am well prepared to reap the benefits of it if they don't. Game on!
PS - This may not be as upbeat as my first post, but it is still a challange to rise above the status quo and stand apart from the rest. One of my favorite quotes: "Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi