Trying to find a mortgage that works for you can be tough. It takes quite a bit of work to find one that will benefit you in the long run, but you have to know where to begin.

How to Get a Mortgage

If you’re in the very early stages of house hunting, make sure you’re really ready to buy a home. Make sure you understand your credit and the impact your credit score will have on your ability to get a mortgage with favorable terms, as well.

Many people choose to get prequalified for a mortgage. All that requires is for you to meet with a lender who will ask about your assets, income and liabilities. They’ll give you an estimate of how much you’ll be able to borrow; that’s incredibly helpful because it helps you narrow your home search based on price.

However, a prequalification is informal. When you’re more serious, you’ll get preapproved for a mortgage. The lender will pull your credit report, verify your information, and confirm that you’ll will qualify for a mortgage.

Sellers are usually more willing to accept offers from people who are preapproved, because it shows that you have the resources to purchase. In fact, a preapproval can make your offer stand out among other offers.

Back to the mortgage, though: once you find a home that you want to purchase, make your offer and wa