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Should I get pre-approved by more than 1 lender?

Should I get pre-approved by more than 1 lender? Will this cause problems down the line, if I am pre-apprived for more than 1 home loan?
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April 12 2012 - Dallas
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Won't cause any problems but may not be necessary to get a contract. Once you have a contract you can shop around.
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April 12 2012
All loan files are unique and being approved by one lender does not automatically mean you are approved by all lenders.  If you are the exception to the rule and really 'plain vanilla", getting pre approved once may be enough.  If you are talking about then shopping rates, that is another aspect of the mortgage loan process. It would be more typically to talk to a few loan officers and talk about the specific pre approval details and discuss rate/cost.  Establishing a relationship at that time would be next step. You can base that on any and all factors you deem important.  Confidence and trust should be high on your list, as rate and fees seldom vary by an .125% and a few hundred dollars on a "plain vanilla" transaction between lenders.  Not so vanilla can vary considerably, but having confidence and trust transaction will close should still be paramount to a future homeowner.
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April 12 2012
I agree with the others, it is good to shop around, but I feel I should say this again. Be careful about having your credit pulled more than once. It can really hurt you if you shop a lot banks and they all pull credit.
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April 12 2012
It wouldn't hurt.
All credit pulls within 30 - 45 days of each other are counted as ONE credit pull. So it doesn't hurt you.
I recommend that you DO get fully pre-approved by more than one lender if your file has anything in it that you think might get you denied. <= Low scores, a lot of lates or collections, ect.

You CAN shop for better rate/terms without getting pre-approved. So you might not have to go thru all of the steps to find a deal.

Let me know if I can answer any follow up questions directly.

Good luck,
Tom
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April 12 2012
I agree with Holt entirely. The pre-approval is really for 2 things in my opinion.

#1 For the agent you are working with to know you have taken an initiative and are serious about purchasing and to show you homes you can afford.

#2 To send along with your written offer to express to the seller you can possibly...maybe....pretty good chance finance the home. Financing is almost always a contingency that will  / should remain until as little as 2 days before closing. The underwriter is always going to make the final decision, the mortgage broker giving the pre-approval is just the beginning of the process.

Good luck with your home search and hope these answers have helped.
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April 12 2012
It's always good to talk to a couple lenders, but just be cautious of having your credit report pulled multiple times.  Once you have your credit score from your initial pre-approval you can share your scores with other lenders and they can quote you rates without pulling your credit.
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April 12 2012

As I always tell my clients you only need to get pre-approved by one lender but once you find a home then it would be best to speak with two more lenders.  It won't hurt you to get pre-approved by multiple upfront lenders but you really only need one pre-approval letter to submit an offer on home. 

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April 12 2012
Shop shop shop!  Just like buying a car! [self promotion deleted by Zillow moderator. Please see our Good Neighbor Policy]
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April 12 2012
 
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