The Mortgage Process

Details about preparing for your application, the main types of mortgages & how your credit score is calculated.

When it comes to mortgage loans there are so many options that it's easy to feel overwhelmed. 

For this reason, we encourage everyone to start by speaking with a Residential Mortgage Loan Originator / Loans for Leaders Specialist. They can answer any questions you may have and assist you through each step of the process. Call today, experienced mortgage professionals are standing by to assist you:


You can prepare for your mortgage application process by asking yourself these six questions:

  •     How much can I afford to pay each month?
  •     How long do I plan on keeping this home?
  •     Is a lower monthly payment a higher priority than paying the loan down quickly?
  •     Am I able to make a down payment?
  •     How many years do I want to pay a mortgage?
  •     Will I be incurring any new obligations that I need to consider?

Your answers to these questions will not only help your RMLO show you additional loan options, but they will also help them advise you on the best possible choices for your unique financial situation. 



There are a wide variety of loan options to choose from, which is why its best to let your loan originator know what's important to you and your family. This way they can advise you on the best possible choices for your unique financial situation. Below are some mortgage dynamics to consider:

  •     The larger the down payment, the lower your monthly payment will be.
  •     A fixed-interest rate will tend to be higher than the start rate of adjustable rates.
  •     The longer the term of payback, the smaller the monthly payment.
  •     The smaller your payment, the larger the amount that is going to interest.
  •     The more you pay to interest, the slower you are building equity.
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Understanding the various mortgage types will be very useful when purchasing a new home. Ultimately, there are three basic types of mortgage loans to consider:

Loans are also classified as either government or conventional loans and conventional loans are further broken down into conforming and non-conforming categories. 

To qualify for a conforming loan (or an "A Paper" loan), it must fall under the guidelines established by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, corporations who have established industry standards and guidelines that govern credit requirements, down payment amounts and maximum loan amounts. 

Once you have decided on a mortgage type, you'll look over the individual features with your loan officer to determine which best meet your needs.

(Found a term you don't understand? Ask a Specialist or consult the LFL Glossary for clarification.)



credit score or FICO score is a system of points earned based on your credit history. Excellent credit can be very rewarding when applying for a mortgage and poor credit will limit your available options. This three-digit number (from 300 to 900) is influenced by such factors, among others, as:

  • late payments
  • debt to credit ratio
  • total debt amount
  • age of accounts (the older the better)
  • inquiries

There are three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion) that produce comparable credit scores using a version of FICO, the industry standard developed originally by Fair Isaac and Company. 

Since this credit score or FICO score is used by most lenders to determine your qualifications for a loan, you may want to see what you can do to increase it before applying for a mortgage. 

Your Residential Mortgage Loan Originator will explain all options and costs based on your credit during the Pre-Approval process. If you have any questions please call a qualified mortgage expert:

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