Are you considering applying for a mortgage in California? If so, you should prepare in advance as the process can be a little daunting. It's not really the application process that is challenging, but getting approved.
Most lenders have strict criteria for approving borrowers for mortgage. While there is no guarantee that you will be approved, making sure you meet some of the criteria will improve your odds. Read on for three California mortgage tips that can increase your chances of getting approved.
i) Register to vote
Whether or not you have registered to vote can be a deal breaker. While you may have excellent credit score without being on the electoral roll, it is almost impossible to get a mortgage if you are not a registered voter. Most lenders in California use the electoral roll data to carry out identity checks and confirm the information provided by borrowers.
Your credit file will indicate whether or not you are on the electoral roll. You can also confirm your registration status at the local council offices. This step should be done early. In most cases, it will take about a month for your name to be added to the electoral roll.
ii) Correct errors on your credit score
Before applying for a mortgage, request for your credit report and check it for errors. Apart from this, find out whether your credit score is correct. If there is some incorrect information, take steps to get it corrected.
Sometimes, credit agencies make mistakes when updating your credit information. For example, some late payments may not have been updated. Sometimes, clerical errors may mean debts cleared months ago are still showing on your report and hence pulling your credit score down.
Contact the national credit agencies to have the errors corrected. You may need to provide proof of any payments you may have made or certificates of clearance issued for debts marked as unpaid. Wait until your credit report and score has been updated with the correct information to apply for a mortgage. Recommended website for more info.
iii) Disassociate with your ex-partner
If you are financially linked to someone, for example you applied for joint credit such as a loan, mortgage or bank account, the actions of the partner can affect approval for a mortgage. Therefore, if you have separated and are no longer with the partner, de-link yourself from any shared financial obligations. If you fail to do this, any misdemeanors or late payments by the partner will reflect badly on you. The best way to handle this is to write to the credit agencies and ask for a notice of "disassociation".
It may have been years since you moved to your own home but you could still be linked to old flat mates if you had a joint account for bills. Therefore, it is worth checking that their credit history is not affecting yours. Otherwise, you should de-link yourself.
You can improve your chances of getting approved for a loan by following the California mortgage tips above.