New York City Real Estate Attorney Daniel Gershburg discusses Mortgage Pre-Approvals

I constantly here this in my law office: “Im good to get the house because I got a Pre-Approval”.  Congratulations.  That means two things.  1.  The bank has verified you are a human being who is currently alive and 2. You have absolutely no clue as to whether or not you’ll get a loan.

Think Im crazy?  I am.  But ask any people you know who purchased a condo/co-op or a home in New York City in the past year what the process was like.  They will tell you it was pure unadulterated hell.  Banks have no clue what they’re doing anymore.  Absolutely none.  And because of that, what you thought would be a smooth loan process has turned into a loan nightmare.  Therefore, here are some friendly tips from your Manhattan Real Estate Attorney:

1.  Everything on time, all the time, with confirmations of receipt.  If youre dealing directly with a bank, you may be speaking to Jim in Omaha on Monday, and Tyle in Akron on Tuesday.  You want to get a point person whenever possible, because you can verify all the documents the bank asked to be sent, were in fact sent in received.  Absent that, I would ask to always deal with supervisors, as they seem more helpful on most occassions.

2.  Do not believe anything they tell you.  Im serious.  The loan process is fairly simple, but they keep saying nonsense that confuses both client and attorney.  They’ll say “We need your lawyer to close by March 9th” but they wont assign a bank attorney who is required to be present at the closing and to actually clear the file to close.  Once you get any response from them, call your lawyer and tell he/she what the bank said.  I don’t care if they get annoyed, they shouldn’t.  It can delay your closing and your rate can expire.  If your lawyer has to call (we do it all the time), so be it.  Its a crazy market out there and you need someone who knows that and doesnt care.

3.  Bankrate.com .  I dont care if your neighbor told you their mortgage broker got them a free house.  Before you do anything, go to that site.  Completely unbiased and independent and offers you a comparison of tons of banks, their rates, closing costs, and even contact information, plus informative articles.

4.  Aspirin.  Take it a lot during the process because you’ll need it.  I know I’m making this sound so dreary but the reality is that the process has become quite painstaking and can take some time and patience to navigate.  Have a good attorney by your side, always always always follow up with the bank (also have a back up bank in case the first isnt moving quick enough) and youll be fine at the end of the day.

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