Before you Start Looking at Houses

Time and the importance of getting a pre-approval letter*

As a real estate agent, and as a Realtor, I have a desire to spend the time necessary to help people find their new home. When someone calls and wants to look at houses, I want to take them. There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing a client find their dream home, get their offer accepted, and seeing them move in! If you’re ready, I’m ready. Let’s take the time to go look at houses.

So why will I ask you for a pre-approval letter? There are several reasons, but mostly it’s to be sure nobody’s time is getting wasted. Having a pre-approval letter from a lender tells me you are serious. It also tells both of us what price range we should be looking in, and not wasting your time looking at homes outside your budget. The last thing you want is to fall in love with a house and then you don’t qualify for the loan. Or worse, you can qualify for the loan, but someone with a pre-approval letter also loves your dream house and beats you to the offer. Most sellers today won’t even look at an offer if it doesn’t have a pre-approval letter attached.


Why would a seller want to accept an offer, take their house off the market, and lose a couple weeks of marketing without the assurance that the deal will go through?

Here are a few highlights from the attached article from “The Mortgage Reports” regarding the importance of getting a pre-approval letter before you start looking at houses:

“Realtors and sellers won’t take you seriously without a pre-approval letter”

“Many real estate agents won’t even allow homebuyers to tour their listing if the buyers don’t show up with a pre-approval letter from a reputable mortgage lender”

“It’s a hot market in just about every part of the country. This means that sellers can be pickier when choosing what offers they’re willing to accept”

“While a pre-qualification letter is better than nothing (at least you put some thought into your prospective purchase), it can’t compete with an offer from a pre-approved buyer”

“Pre-approval tells you what price range you can afford”

“You don’t have to go with the lender from which you receive your pre-approval letter”, so “Don’t let mortgage rate shopping deter you from getting a pre-approval letter first. After all, the best rate in the world will do you no good if you can’t buy the house”

If you’re serious about buying a new house, call me! And for those who are just wanting to browse houses but you’re not ready to buy just yet, you can use my website’s search feature or many of the online real estate sites, such as Or go to open houses. When the time comes that you are serious, get your pre-approval letter and call me! I will devote my time to working for you!

Here’s a link to read the article:

*If you’re serious about buying a house, but you plan to pay all cash, then all of the above will apply to your “Proof of Funds”. A proof of funds is simply a copy of your recent bank statement, with your account number blacked out, showing the funds are available. Present that to your realtor when you’re serious about buying.