What Is a Fixed Rate Mortgage?
Ready to buy a home? Learn what a fixed-rate mortgage is and how it compares to its adjustable-rate mortgage counterparts. A fixed-rate mortgage, which is one of the most basic and popular types of mortgages, has an interest rate that is set when the loan is originated and does not change over time. “Fixed rate” only defines the type of loan and not the terms. For example, most fixed-rate mortgages have a duration of 15 or 30 years, but some lenders offer terms of 10, 20 or even 40 years. Occasionally, lenders offer fixed-rate mortgages with a term of five or seven years with a balloon payment for the balance due at the end. As you shop for your new home, learn more about fixed-rate and other types of mortgages so you are sure to make the right choice for your financial situation.
Mortgage Pre-qualification and Pre-approval
PRE-QUALIFICATION - This is an easy first step to show sellers you’re getting serious about buying. In order to get a mortgage pre-qualification letter, a loan officer will make a general assessment of your financial situation. They’ll be able to gauge whether or not you can get a loan and how much money you can get. PRE-APPROVAL - Once you’ve gotten a better idea of your financial picture, you need to get pre-approved. It’s important to time your pre-approval with when you’re ready to buy because a pre-approval letter expires in 60 to 90 days. Pre-approval is a conditional promise from a bank or lender that they are willing to lend to you, and for what amount.