Why Does A Real Estate Agent Request a Mortgage Pre-Approval?

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When it comes to making major life decisions, most people do a lot of planning, preparing, researching, and then finally “pull the trigger”. Often in the home buying process, we can see the step of applying for a mortgage as one of the last steps we take before purchasing a home. And while the mortgage process does have steps that lead all the way up to the closing date, the step of pre-approval should happen much earlier in the process than some might think.


You see, when you shop for something like a football or a purse, you calculate in your mind whether you have the funds for the purchase (hopefully), and then you look at choosing what to buy. This all happens quickly in our minds, but as a dad, I have been in a sporting goods store looking at the $9 basic Wilson football, the $29 Wilson NFL Replica, and the $99 Wilson Official NFL Authentic Game Ball. My brain quickly narrows down the choices, especially if I’m buying the football for my 7 year old son.


shopping-cart-buy-a-houseWe do this with home buying as well. But in order to shop in the best way, we need to know what we can afford BEFORE we actually start shopping. That way, when we are ready to make a purchase we can do so with confidence. Here are a few of the advantages of getting a pre-approval first, rather than later:

  • Having a range of home prices that we can afford, to shop with confidence
  • An accurate monthly payment, including taxes and insurance, that fits your budget
  • A range of prices and payments helps us make an educated choice on a particular home
  • Sellers often require proof of pre-approval before they accept a contract, taking their home off the market
  • No surprises. Though you may be researching your credit score, etc., a pre-approval is an precise look at what a specific lender will be able to give you, including any concerns that you might need to take care of. Better to learn these things before you fall in love with a house and want to make an offer!

The mortgage process can be a bit daunting which might make us want to put it off until later. But getting our mortgage preapproval in place up front has a lot of advantages. You may find that the agent you are working with will ask if you have been pre-approved in the first conversation you have with them. I do this with all of my clients and potential clients. I also have a lender for my clients to use in case they do not already have one (which most don’t). This might feel intimidating, and that’s ok. A good agent is on your side, and works for your best interest. This process should feel like a big deal, because IT IS! So make sure you take the right steps at the right time. And make sure to get a pre-approval first!


If you don’t have pre-approval yet, and you’re buying a home, or just want to talk to someone about the process, give me a call today at 352-615-7794, or email me at walter@yourhomeinocala.com.