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Buying a Home -
Getting Ready to Buy a Home
Mortgage Application Checklist
What to Ask a Lender
Financial Considerations

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General Tips and Tools -
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Mortgage Calculator
What to ask Lenders
  • Are both fixed-rate and adjustable mortgage loans available?
  • What is the interest rate?
  • How long can I "lock-in" the financing at the current interest rate?
  • Is a float down lock available in case rates drop after I have locked in?
  • What are the other fees a lender may charge me in conjunction with my loan?
  • Are funds for a second mortgage available?
  • On adjustable loans:
    • How often will the interest rate be adjusted?
    • Is there a maximum limit on each rate change?
    • How often will the monthly payment be adjusted?
    • Is there a ceiling on payment adjustments?
    • Can the term of the loan be extended?
    • What is the maximum rate that can be charged over the life of the loan?
    • Is there any potential for negative amortization?
  • Is there a pre-payment penalty clause? This involves extra charges for paying off the loan before maturity. About 80% of all loans in the United States are paid off early.
  • What is the "grace" period? How late can a monthly payment be made before a late charge is assessed? What will happen if a payment is missed?
  • If you sell your house, will the new buyer (if he/she qualifies) be able to assume your mortgage at the same interest rate?
  • Do you have to pay "points" to get your new mortgage? Usually lenders charge points for the cost of giving you a mortgage loan. A "point" is 1% of the loan.
  • Will the lender require mortgage insurance?
  • Is the loan serviced locally or is the servicing sold?
  • Ask for a written good faith deposit.

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