When looking for a home, preparing in advance will save you time and trouble once you’ve started making offers.  When the time comes for a mortgage application we send our clients a Needs List.  This list requests all the documentation that we need.  It is good to know ahead of time what documents we need and why, to help make the process smoother for the borrower.  I have put together a general list of documents that we request from our borrowers. Hopefully, this will help prepare you to plan ahead for the perfect mortgage application.


  • Provide your last two paystubs with your W2s and Federal tax returns for the last two years (include all schedules).  State returns are not needed.  If you are self-employed, ask me for the additional documentation requirements.  If you receive bonuses or commissions or have changed your job or position, let’s talk.


  • Combine all the funds needed to close into one account at least two months prior to your application.  Be sure to document any other deposits here as each could be scrutinized.

Your Statements

  • Save all pages of your asset statements, even if some are blank or are just advertisements.


  • Make copies of checks and deposit slips to prove they are not borrowed money.  Deposit checks individually.  Don’t deposit cash without clear proof of the source.


  • If you are going to sell stocks, bonds, investments, or borrow against a retirement account, do it now.  Cashing out now may cost your a few dollars in additional gains, but it also protects against losses.

Current Housing

  • If you own and are selling, provide a copy of the HUD-1 settlement statement.
  • If you own and are not selling, you’ll need to qualify for both homes or meet the requirements for renting the current.
  • If you are renting, show 12 months of canceled checks, demonstrating timely payments and/or written verification from your management company.  Ideally, pay your rent on the same day each month or prior to its due date.
  • If you live with family, you may need a letter stating that you live rent-free.


  • Check your credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com.  Identify any erroneous info now and consult with us for the correct action to take.  If you co-signed a loan or are being reimbursed for a loan that’s in your name, you’ll need at least 6 months of checks to exclude it.  Avoid new credit or inquiries.  These can lower your score and increase your rate.

Employment Stability

  • Ideally, you;ll have two years or more with your current employer.  Consult with us before changing employers, position or method of compensation.  For example, don’t switch from salary to commissions.

Help in Advance

  • I’m here to help you now, too, not just once you’ve found a home.  Contact me with your questions.