Starting a Mortgage Application: Steps for Success

Starting a mortgage application can seem daunting, but it can be a smooth and efficient process with the proper preparation and knowledge. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate through it effectively:


1. Assess Your Financial Health

Before diving into the mortgage application process, it’s essential to understand your financial situation, which includes:

Credit Score: Obtain your credit report from the major credit bureaus and ensure your score is accurate. A higher credit score can lead to better loan terms.

Debt-to-Income Ratio: Calculate your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio, the percentage of your monthly income that goes towards debt payments. Lenders typically prefer a DTI ratio of 43% or lower.

Savings: Ensure you have enough savings for a down payment, closing costs, and an emergency fund.


2. Determine Your Budget

Understanding how much you can afford will help narrow your home search and loan options. You don’t want to fall in love with a house to learn that you don’t love the house payment that goes with it.


3. Gather Necessary Documents

We will require a variety of documents to process your mortgage application. Collect the following:

Proof of Income: Recent pay stubs, W-2 forms, tax returns, and bank statements.

Employment Verification: Contact information for your employer and proof of employment.

Identification: A government-issued ID (driver’s license, passport, etc.).

Debt Information: Statements for credit cards, car loans, student loans, and other debts.


4. Research Mortgage Options

Different types of mortgages may suit different financial situations. Common types include:

Fixed-Rate Mortgage: Offers a constant interest rate and monthly payments over the life of the loan.

Adjustable-Rate Mortgage (ARM): An interest rate changes periodically based on the market.

FHA Loan: Backed by the Federal Housing Administration, suitable for first-time homebuyers with lower credit scores.

VA Loan: Available to veterans, active-duty service members, and specific National Guard and Reserves members.


5. Get Pre-Approved

A pre-approval letter from a lender shows sellers that you are a serious and qualified buyer. At this point in the process, we’ll talk about what options are available to you and the benefits of each. We will also review your budget and the funds you will need at closing.


When you’re ready to start the journey to your new home, contact Andy Schoemehl at 314-221-7797 today.

Andy Schoemehl | Vice President
314.221.7797 phone | 636.898.1017 fax
[email protected]
NMLS #258507
16253 Swingley Ridge Rd, Suite 200
Chesterfield, MO 63017


About the Author
Worth Clark Realty
We’re a true full-service real estate brokerage, providing innovative and value-driven services to help people buy, sell, and lease residential real estate.

We're proud to be agent-owned.