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Buying a home

What you need know about home loan pre-approval

12 October 2020

Buying a new home is a pretty big deal.

As you move through research stages, from looking at properties to making an offer, you’ll encounter a few steps you need to take to become a first-time homeowner.

Home loan pre-approval is one such step. Though it’s not a requirement, it’ll help you know approximately how much you have to spend. So, you can hunt for a home with confidence.

What is home loan pre-approval?

Home loan pre-approval happens when your lender agrees, in principle, to lend you money for the purchase of a new home. It doesn’t mean you’ve received final approval for a home loan. However, it may mean you’re able to make an offer with a little more certainty.

At Suncorp Bank, we call this step ‘pre-approval’, but different financial institutions and lenders might not use this term. It may also be referred to as:

  • conditional approval, or
  • approval-in-principle.

3 things you should know about pre-approval

Pre-approval offers expire

Home loan pre-approval is subject to certain conditions being met. These include your personal financial situation — such as your employment status, whether you’re starting a family or if you’ve taken on a new loan — as well as the property market. Over time, these factors are likely to change, which is why an offer will expire after three months (although depending on your circumstances, Suncorp Bank may decide to extend your offer for a further three months).

In addition to these conditions, pre-approval depends on the property itself being acceptable to your lender.

Applying for pre-approval may affect your credit rating

Though applying for a single pre-approval is unlikely to affect your credit rating, applying for several in a short period might harm your ability to borrow. Pre-approvals are visible on your credit file as a loan enquiry, so multiple applications can create the impression that you’re financially unstable.

To avoid this, you may find it useful to wait to apply for pre-approval until you’re nearly ready to make an offer. If you’re not quite ready to apply, try Suncorp Bank’s Borrowing Limit Home Loan Calculator to estimate how much you could borrow.

It could give you a home-buying edge

Obtaining pre-approval means you’ll be able to more confidently put in an offer on a property, or bid on it at auction, and move on to full approval potentially ahead of other buyers. You may even find that sellers prioritise your offer because your finances have already been validated.

How to apply for pre-approval

It’s easy to apply for home loan pre-approval with Suncorp Bank!

Just organise the required documentation and complete the online form. Your situation will be reviewed by one of our dedicated lending specialists.

If you have any concerns or questions about the home buying process, contact a Suncorp Mobile Lender today. Mobile Lenders are available seven days a week and they can meet you at a time and place that suits you. They’ll be your go-to contact every step of way.

Book An Appointment With A Mobile Lender

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Banking products are issued by Suncorp-Metway Ltd ABN 66 010 831 722 AFSL No 229882 Australian Credit Licence 229882 (“Suncorp Bank”) to approved applicants only. Equipment Finance Products are offered by Suncorp Metway Advances Corporation Pty Ltd ABN 89 100 845 127 to approved applicants only. Eligibility criteria, conditions and fees apply and are available on request. Please read the relevant Product Information Document before making any decision about a product. Contact us for a copy. Any advice is general in nature and does not take into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.

Products and services including banking and insurance (including home and car insurance) are provided by separate companies in the Suncorp Group. Each entity is not responsible for, or liable in respect of, products and services provided by other entities of the Suncorp Group. Suncorp Bank (Suncorp-Metway Ltd ABN 66 010 831 722) is only liable for the banking products or services it provides and not the products and services of other companies in the Suncorp Group.

Information is intended to be of general nature only. We do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss incurred as a result of reliance upon it – please make your own enquiries.

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