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When to get preapproved?

Renting right now.  Credit scores of approx 660.  Income of $52k/year.  Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharged in June of 2013.  Husband is a graduate student.  I know we have to wait until June of 2015 to be approved for a FHA mortgage.  

My question is, can we be preapproved before that so we can be ready to purchase right after we've hit our two year waiting period?  Or are we unable to get even preapproved until after the two years is up.  
  • April 28 2014 - Greendale
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Answers (9)

Everyone's situation is a little different. Ideally, 6 months is nice but anything could happen or change in that 6 months and the credit scores, your savings, income, and interest rates are all subject to change in that time period. 

Depending on the circumstances of your bankruptcy, you could be eligible for the FHA Back to Work Program. Our company closes these every month without having to wait for the traditional timelines in regards to bankruptcy, foreclosure, or short sale. There are a lot of variables that go into that program but you should be aware of it as you might be able to get into a house sooner than you think. If you want to talk more about that possibility please feel free to message me through my profile.

One thing you want to be careful with is that there is no such thing as a pre-approval. Your file and scenario is still subject to underwriting review before you are final approved to close on the loan. The preliminary conversation would be geared toward a pre qualification which means that your scenario fits the minimum eligibility requirements but is still subject to underwriting review.

Best of luck!
 
  • September 18 2014
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While you cannot get preapproval before the time frame is up, you can work with a lender in the meantime to make sure that your credit continues to "clean up".  Six months prior to is always a good starting point. It is always a good idea to work with a lender and get associated with him/her prior to the purchase.  Additionally, it is never to  late work with a realtor to see what your dollar can buy in your price category.  The best thing to do is be upfront with your realtor and explain your specific situation. Being educated about the market, makes a smart buyer.
  • September 18 2014
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You will not be able to get an official pre-approval until after the waiting period is over. Until then, you can still get pre-qualified and have a lender take a look at your finances. It can be good to have a lender look at your current finances because they can give you advice on how to be ready to buy a home financially once the time comes. If you need additional assistance, feel free to reach out. Good luck!
  • April 29 2014
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You can't get the automated underwriting approval in advance of the waiting period deadline, but you can get a general pre-approval. However, this amounts to nothing more than the paper it's written on until you have passed the deadline, so it's essentially worthless. What you should do at this point is to find a lender that you want to work with over the long haul, trust, discuss the scenario, and one who will understand that this will be a bit of a wait. He/She can look at your income, assets and all other elements in order to provide you with some comfort right now that you are on the right track.
  • April 28 2014
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Being pre-approved means getting what is called a Desktop Underwriting approval. You can't get that until after your waiting period is over. You can get pre-qualified anytime.

Hope this helps.
  • April 28 2014
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If you want to purchase as soon as your waiting period is over I would suggest speaking to a lender now. See what options you will have at that point, what you can do to improve your chances and put you into a better position to buy. One option that you may have sooner is a USDA loan as long as you didn't have a mortgage wrapped up in your bankruptcy.

If you'd like more information please feel free to reach out to me through my zillow profile.
  • April 28 2014
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You can get Pre-Approved and ready to go before the two year waiting period is up, but you wouldn't be able to purchase until June 2015. I would recommend contacting a lender a month or two beforehand so you can be ready to go when the waiting period is up and you are mortgage ready again. Feel free to shoot me an email if you have any more questions, or if you need help with your future mortgage!
  • April 28 2014
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Profile picture for Dan Tabit
Jennifer,
I would suggest you start the process of preapproval a couple months ahead of your ability to qualify.  Until then it's crucial that you take the right steps of re-establishing credit so that you don't reach your goal only to have to wait more.
Many good people have had to go through bankruptcy and have come out the other side okay.  The sooner you re-establish credit, pay everyone on time and set aside some savings for down payment, closing costs and reserves the better off you'll be.
In meeting with a lender a couple months early, they can confirm that the last step will be clearing that deadline, or they may have other suggestions you should take to improve your odds. 
Until then get a secured credit card, use it regularly and pay it off monthly.  Get another one a few months later.  Any mistakes will hurt you double, so pay your bills early just to be safe.  Best of luck.
  • April 28 2014
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I would speak to a lender 6 months before that date just to make sure nothing else comes up. Then again in May/June
  • April 28 2014
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