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Getting a pre-approval for a mortgage when buying a condo in Miami

Updated: Jul 10, 2023

Buying a condo in Miami is an exciting process, but getting your offer declined or missing out because you're not prepared is no fun. But making an offer can go in your favor if you are pre-approved for your mortgage beforehand. A pre-approval displays that you are serious about buying and have already been approved for a loan amount, which makes the seller more likely to accept your offer and helps you understand what you can afford.




Before we get into the article, here are a few things to keep in mind when buying a condo in Miami:

  • Talk to a mortgage lender to get pre-approved for a loan amount before beginning your search. A pre-approval will help you know how much you can afford on a condo.

  • Keep in mind that you may need a larger down payment for a condo than you would for a single-family home. This is because condos are considered riskier investments by lenders.

  • Make sure to research the condo complex before making an offer. Check things like the financial stability of the complex and its history of repairs and maintenance.





What is a pre-approval, and why you should get one when buying a condo in Miami?

A pre-approval is a process where you provide a lender with specific documents. They provide you with a pre-approval for up to a certain amount. Getting one before you while you start your condo search can help speed up the buying process. How so? It determines what you can afford:

  • You will get a breakdown of what you will need to close on the property

  • Get an estimated interest rate that you may be able to lock in, and

  • Get an estimate of what you will pay monthly.


A pre-approval also helps you buy a condo in Miami because you may have competition. You want to ensure you have a pre-approval letter ready to be submitted to the owner. You are likely to be going up against cash offers as about 50% of the condo transactions are cash in the metro area.



How to get pre-approved?

Getting a pre-approval is straightforward. Just contact a lender and provide some basic information about yourself and your finances. The lender will then check your credit and verify your income and employment. Once everything is confirmed, you will be given a letter stating that you have been approved for a specific amount.



Why local lenders are better for condo loans in Miami

In Miami, buying a condo is unlike purchasing a condo anywhere outside South Florida. I recommend that you contact a local lender familiar with condos in the areas of interest. Hiring the right lender can help you save from your deal possibly falling apart.


When buying a condo in Miami, you will most likely have to put 25% down. Many condos in Miami are not FHA approved or may not be able to pass a full review. But a lender may lend on a condo with a limited review which requires the buyer to put 25% down. We'll talk more about limited and full condo reviews in another article.


Local lenders may have a list of condo buildings in the area that can be purchased with 3% down, 5% down, and 10% down, saving you time and money.



The benefits of getting a pre-approval for your condo purchase

  • Showing the seller that you are a serious buyer and have already been approved for a loan amount. This can make the seller more likely to accept your offer.

  • It gives you a better understanding of what you can afford. Remember that the monthly condo association fee can alter your purchasing power and give you an idea of your closing costs.

  • It allows you to compare different loan options and find the best one for your needs.

  • It gives you peace of mind knowing that you have been approved for a mortgage loan.



What happens after you get a pre-approval

Once you have a pre-approval, you can house hunt with more confidence. You'll know that you're already approved for a specific loan amount, so you won't have to worry about falling in love with property out of your price range.


You will also be able to make an offer on a condo that you're interested in purchasing promptly, which can help you in a hot seller's market.



Conclusion

If you're buying a condo in Miami, getting a pre-approval for your mortgage is essential. This can make the seller more likely to accept your offer, and it also shows you what you can afford. In a hot seller's market, making a quick offer can also be helpful. So if you're planning on buying a condo in Miami, get a pre-approval for your mortgage today.




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