When you’re house hunting, it’s very important to talk to a Mortgage lender before calling a Real Estate Agent.
A Real Estate Broker in Puerto Rico will not show you a home if you don’t show them a Pre-Qualified or Pre-Approve letter from a bank.
Because they want to make sure that you are a serious buyer and not just lurking around for curiosity. I’ve heard stories on how many Real Estate Brokers here in the island have been taken advantage of. It’s not fair for them to be treated as a tourist guide running around showing properties and knowing you’re not thinking in purchasing a home as of yet.
Also, Sellers don’t want unqualified buyers walking through their homes and more than likely they may ask for the Pre -Approved letter or proof of funds. All Agents here in PR as well as in the states get paid when we make a sale.
So, Please don’t take it to heart when a Real Estate Agent requests a Pre-Approval letter.
1) How can I get a Pre-Qualification letter?
If you’re serious, Look around for the best rates then call your local Bank or Coop. The Pre-Qualification process is free of charge and it takes 30 minutes or less for an over the phone interview with the bank representative. If you can’t find one I’ll gladly refer one to you.
2) What’s a Pre-Qualification letter?
A pre-qualification letter will give you an official document stating that you are a possible buyer, but it doesn’t mean all that much because the mortgage banker will ask you information on your assets, income, and expenses. That is where he or she will provide the letter without checking your credit.
The letter will say how you may appear to qualify for a loan up to a certain amount. It just gives you and the Real Estate broker an idea on how much you may qualify for. “This will not guarantee you will be approve for a home”.
3) What’s a Pre-Approval letter?
A Pre-Approval letter is given when you provide proof all of your income, expenses and assets such as pay stubs, bank statements, Tax returns. After the lender has all of this gathered up they will then check your credit. Then, the lender will give you a letter stating the amount you may qualified for with the description of the home you choose.
A Pre-Approval letter gives the seller and the Real Estate Agent more confidence that you are a serious buyer. But neither letter, is guaranteed you’ll be accepted a loan offer.
4) What is having Evidence of Funds?
We get a lot of customers in Puerto Rico mostly Real Estate Investors that purchase Real Estate Property in cash. In that case, the Real Estate Broker is going to ask for Evidence of Funds. It’s just a bank statement with your information showing how much funds you have available and based from that information the agent will search for properties upon the amount available.
There is no sense in dreaming of a home, wasting your time and that of an agent to see homes until you are ready to purchase. That time start with a Pre-Approval letter.
Before you leave we would love to hear how was your experience while purchasing a home here in the island and what part of the island caught your attention.
Great house hunting!
The Five Star Real Estate Group,