Home Loan Documentation Checklist

July 21, 2010

Required Home Mortgage Documents

Whether you’re applying for a home loan or looking at mortgage refinancing you’ll have to fill out a lot of paperwork and provide documentation of your income and assets before the bank will process the loan.

In our case we filled out a general loan application up front in order to get a mortgage rate quote but the bank wouldn’t lock the rate until we had a contract and wouldn’t start processing the loan until they had the required documentation.

Transferring Documents

When you’re at that step, your bank will send you a bunch of disclosures to sign and a list of documents they need from you.  It used to be that you had to meet with your loan officer for this step or wait for something in the mail but now they can send you the documents electronically using either secure email or a secure website.

Once you have everything signed and your loan documents together you can upload them to a secure site, mail them back, or fax them in; depending on your lender. Here’s a list of the documentation you may have to provide and forms might be expected to sign, not all lenders will require each of these items:

Income Verification

  • Most recent pay stubs covering at least 30 days income
  • Copy of last years W-2’s
  • Contact name and number for your HR Rep

Asset Documentation

  • Two months of checking/savings account statements
  • Recent copy of your retirement/investment account statements

Proof of Insurance

  • Proof of home owners insurance for your current home and your new home
  • Copy of your most recent mortgage statement to verify insurance & taxes in escrow

They may also ask for a copy of your photo ID and a deposit to pay for the home appraisal and your credit score before they get started.

Home Mortgage Requirements

Here’s a list of the common disclosures that lenders may require you to sign, date, and return:

Uniform Residential Loan Application – This is the standard Form 1003 you’ll fill out for any home loan.

Good Faith Estimate Acknowledgment – The Good Faith Estimate (GFE) is an itemized list of fees and costs associated with your loan.  The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) requires lenders to give you this, which is probably why the require you to acknowledge you saw it.  Sometimes this acknowledgment will include an “Intent to Proceed” section that authorizes them to charge and collect the fees necessary to process your loan.

Borrower’s Certification and Authorization – Authorizes the lender to collect & verify information about you in order to process loan.

Request for Transcript of Tax Return – Form 4506T allows the lender to get a copy of your 1040 tax return.  The main thing they’re looking for are non-reimbursed business expenses that you write off on your taxes.  If these are high, then the income amount on your paystubs and W-2s might not be the true amount of income you have available for loan payments.

Federal Truth in Lending Initial Disclosure – Shows the total cost of the loan, with your annual percentage rate and your finance charges.

Social Security Number Verification – Authorizes the social security administration to verify your name and SSN for the lender.

Borrower Certification of Income – This is a form where you confirm the income information you’ve provided is true and that civil liability/criminal penalties could result if you’re falsifying information.

Whew, that’s a lot of documents!  It is a good feeling once you finally have it all printed out, signed, and faxed off to the bank.  Just make sure your printer has a lot of ink before you get started!


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Ben Edwards, the founder of Money Smart Life, saved up enough to buy a Nintendo back when he was 12 years old. When he used the money to buy shares of Wal-Mart stock instead, he knew he wasn't like the other kids... His addiction to personal finance has paid off for his family and now he's helping you to afford the life that you want. Check him out on the web at Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook.

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7 Responses to Home Loan Documentation Checklist

  • Jim

    if you keep your financial records organized as they come in throughout the month and year this information should be very easy to organize and deliver to your bank or lending institution.

    this alone will save you at least one head ache as you apply for a home loan.

  • Craig

    It’s amazing the amount of documents you need to put together when buying a home! But better to get them all in order beforehand to make the process go more smoothly.


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