OK, spring seems a long way off today. It looks like the North Pole outside the window of my cozy home in here Natick.
But if you are planning on buying a house this spring, it makes sense to start prepping now, a top mortgage expert advises.
Buyers can expect cutthroat competition and multiple bids for the most promising homes when the spring market returns.
And buyers can boost their competitive position by getting fully approved for a mortgage now, rather than just doing a cursory pre-approval, according to John Wheaton, a California mortgage broker who works in one of the most competitive markets in the country.
Wheaton made his remarks in an online forum question-and-answer forum hosted by Redfin.
While getting preapproved can take just a half hour, getting the real thing - a fully underwritten mortgage approval - can take ten days or more. And that's after you've hunted down all the pay stubs, tax forms and other documentation that is required.
Here's Wheaton's full remark:
If you're a buyer considering a purchase in April, the time to get your loan approval in hand is right now! I recommend that buyers secure a fully underwritten loan approval instead of just a pre-approval. The fully underwritten approval can help the boost the buyers' competitiveness, particularly in multiple-offer scenarios. However, this process takes a bit more documentation, and around 10 days to complete compared to a pre-approval which sometimes is a half-hour process.
The author is solely responsible for the content.