Welcome to the Home Buying Process

Get Started

Buying a home can seem overwhelming. After all, it is one of the most important financial decisions you will make in your lifetime. At Signature Lending Services, we feel the key to a successful experience is to provide as much information to our clients as possible.

The following is an outline of the entire loan process, from beginning to end. By reading on, you will learn the materials you need, where to get them, and who to give them to.

Application and Preapproval

The first step in the loan process is to complete an application. This can be done via our website, or over the telephone with one of our experienced Loan Officers. It takes about 20 minutes and there is no cost or obligation. Once your application is complete, a Loan Officer will contact you to review it.

Supporting Documentation

Upon review of your application, you will receive an emailed list of the supporting documentation needed to obtain preapproval.

Document Checklist

The most important thing to remember when applying for a home loan, is that lenders essentially just want to make sure that you are of good financial character. The main documents which lenders will want to look at will subsequently include:

  • Proof of your earnings for the two years leading up to your application
  • Proof of residency and any rent which you have paid
  • Your personal tax returns for at least the last two years
  • An IRS wage and tax statement (W-2) covering your past two years employment history
  • Documents pertaining to any existing debts or lines of credit you have
  • Your past two months checking and savings account statements

What if you are Missing any Mortgage Application Documents?

As a rule, if you have nothing to hide about your past personal financial history, you will have nothing to fear when it comes to applying for your first mortgage. That said, if at some point in the past you have experienced some kind of financial hardship, you should plan in advance to explain any derogatory items which might show up in your personal credit history.

Preapproval

Once your documents are received, we will review them and determine an approvable purchase price and down payment, as well as the various loan programs available to you. The preapproval will also let you know the interest rates you qualify for based on your credit.

Your Loan Officer can now issue a preapproval letter to include with your purchase offers. The letter indicates your income, assets and credit have all been verified, and will provide assurance to the seller of your ability to obtain a mortgage.

Rate Lock and Final Approval

After a seller accepts your offer, it is important you get us the Purchase and Sale contract as soon as possible. Once you are under contract, you and your Loan Officer will review your loan options and discuss the various rate and cost scenarios available. At this point in the process, you have the option of locking in your rate and closing costs. Whether you decide to lock upfront or not, the loan disclosures and loan process should start immediately to ensure closing on time. This includes the following:

  • An appraisal supporting property value
  • Loan Disclosures – state and federal disclosures will be emailed to you for electronic signatures. The emailed disclosures will include the Loan Estimate.
  • Preliminary title report
  • A list of additional documents needed to complete the final approval

Upon receipt of these documents, your file is submitted to underwriting for final approval.

Loan Docs

Upon receipt of final underwriter approval, we draw your loan documents and submit them to the closing agent.

Closing

The closing agent coordinates all the documents that need to be reviewed and signed. The seller will execute the deed to the property, funds will be collected and disbursed, and the closing agent will record the necessary instruments to give you legal ownership of the property. When all is signed and the transfer of funds is complete, you receive the keys to your new home.

Closing Documents
  • Deed
    The Deed is an important mortgage-closing document that transfers the title of real property from the seller to the buyer. It includes a detailed description of the property being transferred, and must be signed according to state laws where the property is located. The Deed is mailed to the buyer after the mortgage-closing agent officially records it at the local government office.
  • Mortgage or Deed of Trust
    This is the “security instrument” which gives the lender a claim against your house if you fail to live up to the terms of the mortgage note. It recites the legal rights and obligations of both you and the lender, and gives the lender the right to take the property by foreclosure if you default on the loan. The mortgage or deed of trust will be recorded, providing public notice of the lender’s claim (lien) on the property.
  • Note
    This is the written agreement signed by the borrower at closing that contains the promise to repay the loan. The Note also contains the terms of the loan, such as loan amount, interest rate, monthly payment, and term.

    • Loan Estimate
      The Loan Estimate (LE) is an important mortgage closing document because it enables the buyer to have an accurate understanding of the overall mortgage closing costs, as well as the monthly payments on the mortgage loan. On October 3rd 2015 the CFPB released the standardized Loan Estimate form for all lenders to use, ensuring that borrowers are aware of the components of their loan ― including the interest rate, term length, penalties, fees and all other expenses. Because each lender is required to use the same 3-page Loan Estimate form, buyers can compare products from multiple lenders to find the best offer. The Loan Estimate combines old Good Faith Estimate (GFE) and Truth-in-Lending (TIL) forms.
    • Closing Disclosure
      The Closing Disclosure replaces the old HUD-1 Settlement Statement. The Closing Disclosure is a form that shows the buyer/borrower the breakdown of the total amount of money that must be paid at mortgage loan closing. The borrower must receive the Closing Disclosure at least 3 days prior to closing. This form is similar in format to the Loan Estimate. This is to enable the consumer to compare the initial quoted costs to the final costs.

What They Say about signature Lending

The team at Signature Lending were wonderful, outstanding, helpful and very respectful mortgage company. My experience with a prior servicer was terrible and I am glad I chose Signature Lending to help me on my purchase.

Amy Sanders

Mark has been very detailed, hardworking and knowledgeable throughout this whole process. My husband and I are expecting so we are very anxious to make sure our first home purchase is a positive experience. We appreciate Mark and his staff's superb effort and we have the fullest amount of faith in Signature Lending Services.

Mary Ann Kelly

The team at Signature Lending were wonderful, outstanding, helpful and very respectful mortgage company. My experience with a prior servicer was terrible and I am glad I chose Signature Lending to help me on my purchase.

Amy Sanders

Mark has been very detailed, hardworking and knowledgeable throughout this whole process. My husband and I are expecting so we are very anxious to make sure our first home purchase is a positive experience. We appreciate Mark and his staff's superb effort and we have the fullest amount of faith in Signature Lending Services.

Mary Ann Kelly