Loan Documents

If you’re serious about buying a home, getting pre-approved for a mortgage is a critical step. It’s also a tedious one. Lenders seem to want a mountain of documents and have so many

Yet the payoff is worth it. Most agents recommend mortgage pre-approval because it strengthens your offer. Sellers like to know the buyer already has financing secured.

Plus, you’re going to need that same hefty stack of paperwork for your official mortgage application once you’ve got a contract on a home, so you’re really knocking out two tasks at once.

To help, we’ve created a documents checklist for each type of mortgage pre-approval. Warning: Some lists are longer than others:

Conventional Loan FHA Loan Buying an Investment Property If You’re Self-Employed VA Loan USDA Loan Job-Based Incentive Loan

Conventional Loan Documents

If you’re employed and get regular paychecks, plus a W-2 every year, and you’re not going through FHA, USDA, or an incentive-buying program, these are the documents you need to apply for mortgage pre-approval:

·         Identification (one of these, which you will need to show in person)

1.     Driver’s license

2.     Passport

3.     Other state- or federal-issued ID

·         Income

1.     Pay stubs for the last 30 days

2.     Last two federal tax returns

3.     Last two W-2s

4.     Proof of any additional income (second jobs, social security, alimony, etc.)

·         Accounts

1.     Last two statements on all bank accounts -- be sure to include all pages, even blank ones

2.     Statements for all investment and/or retirement accounts

·         Property

1.     Settlement statement from previous home sale, if applicable

·         Additional documents

1.     Contact information for your landlord(s) for the last two years, if applicable

2.     Divorce decree, separation agreement, and/or property settlement agreement, if applicable

3.     Gift letter if a family member is helping with down payment (lender will have form)

4.     A letter of explanation (LOE) for late payments, collections, judgments, or other derogatory items in your credit history, if applicable

FHA Loan Documents

If you’re applying for mortgage pre-approval with the Federal Housing Administration, you’ll need these documents:

·         Identification (one of these, which you will need to show in person)

1.     Driver’s license

2.     Passport

3.     Other state- or federal-issued ID

·         Income

1.     Pay stubs for the last 30 days, if applicable

2.     Last two federal tax returns

3.     Last two W-2s or 1099s, if applicable

4.     Proof of any additional income (second jobs, social security, alimony, etc.)

·         Accounts

1.     Last two statements on all bank accounts -- be sure to include all pages, even blank ones

2.     Statements for all investment and/or retirement accounts

·         Property

1.     Closing disclosure (or HUD-1 if the sale took place before Oct. 3, 2015) for previous purchase

·         Additional documents

1.     Contact information for your landlord(s) for the last two years, if applicable

2.     Divorce decree, separation agreement, and/or property settlement agreement, if applicable

3.     Gift letter if a family member is helping with down payment (lender will have form)

4.     A letter of explanation (LOE) for late payments, collections, judgments, or other derogatory items in your credit history, if applicable

Documents For Buying an Investment Property

If you’re buying a property you plan to rent, these are the documents you should have in hand to apply for pre-approval:

·         Identification (one of these, which you will need to show in person)

1.     Driver’s license

2.     Passport

3.     Other state- or federal-issued ID

·         Income

1.     Pay stubs for the last 30 days, if applicable

2.     Last two federal tax returns

3.     Last two W-2s or 1099s, if applicable

4.     Proof of any additional income (second jobs, social security, alimony, etc.)

·         Accounts

1.     Last two statements on all bank accounts -- be sure to include all pages, even blank ones

2.     Statements for all investment and/or retirement accounts

·         Property

1.     Settlement statement on any recent home sales

2.     Recent mortgage statements on all properties you own

3.     Proof of insurance for all properties you own

4.     Current leases for all rental properties you own

·         Additional documents

1.     Contact information for your landlord(s) for the last two years, if applicable

2.     Divorce decree, separation agreement, and/or property settlement agreement, if applicable

3.     Gift letter if a family member is helping with down payment (lender will have form)

4.     A letter of explanation (LOE) for late payments, collections, judgments, or other derogatory items in your credit history, if applicable

Self-Employed or Business-Owner Mortgage Documents

If you’re self-employed or own a business, these are the documents you need for the mortgage pre-approval process:

·         Identification (one of these, which you will need to show in person)

1.     Driver’s license

2.     Passport

3.     Other state- or federal-issued ID

·         Income

1.     Pay stubs for the last 30 days, if applicable

2.     Last two federal tax returns

3.     Last two 1099s

4.     Proof of any additional income (second jobs, social security, alimony, etc.)

·         Accounts

1.     Last two statements on all bank accounts -- be sure to include all pages, even blank ones

2.     Statements for all investment and/or retirement accounts

3.     Last two years Corporate, S-Corp, LLC, or partnership tax returns

4.     Last two years 1099s, if applicable

·         Property

1.     Settlement statement from previous home sale, if applicable

·         Additional documents

1.     Contact information for your landlord(s) for the last two years, if applicable

2.     Divorce decree, separation agreement, and/or property settlement agreement, if applicable

3.     Gift letter if a family member is helping with down payment (lender will have form)

4.     A letter of explanation (LOE) for late payments, collections, judgments, or other derogatory items in your credit history, if applicable.