How Long is a Mortgage Pre-Approval Good For? Do They Expire?

Published on: June 13th, 2022 | Written by Jimmy Vercellino
how long is a mortgage pre-approval good for

Everyone starts at square one when buying their first home or refinancing their current home. They’re all required to get preapproved for a mortgage to begin the homebuying journey.

After learning how much house you can purchase, it’s a race against the clock to find your dream home.

And with the state of the market, the pace has only quickened. Any real estate agent will agree with that

We want to help you get a pre-approval letter in hand and tell you how long it’s good for. Then, you can refinance or put down the first offer on a home with confidence knowing how long you have.

What is a Mortgage Pre-approval?

Pre-approvals are the lender’s guarantee on the total loan amount that home buyers can borrow. After receiving a mortgage preapproval letter, the lender promises the seller that you have the buying power for their property.

Working toward a pre-approval means first completing a loan application. You’ll need to fill it out with your employment history, credit score, and other crucial financial information.

You can only get pre-approved for the amount you want if the lender believes you can pay it back when applying for a mortgage.

Most sellers won’t accept your offer until you get a pre-approval, so it’s crucial to start there before purchasing or refinancing your home.

How Long Does a Mortgage Pre-approval Last?

Your pre-approval lasts 90 days, which means the seller has that long to accept your offer. This stays intact, assuming that your credit score and financial situation don’t undergo any major changes during that period.

For example, the pre-approval period may end if an employer fires you or you max out a credit card. Lenders can write another pre-approval letter if they wish, but it will likely be for less than before.

Keep in mind that pre-approvals have different timelines if you receive multiple offers from different lenders.

What’s the Difference Between a Mortgage Pre-approval and Pre-qualification?

Unlike pre-approvals, lenders send them before pre-approvals to provide a rough estimate of how much you can borrow.

Pre-qualifications, on the other hand, don’t have the same guarantee that pre-approval letters do. The lender can do additional digging into your financial story and change the loan amount after the fact.

Both are useful for purchasing or refinancing a home, but an experienced professional will help work toward a pre-approval you can rely on. Then, you don’t have to worry about affording the dream home you saw on Zillow.

Pre-ApprovalKnow exactly how much home the lender will fund.A personalized lender issues a pre-approval.Gives seller confidence that you have buying power.
Pre-QualificationReceive an estimate of the amount of home you can borrow. Anyone can solicit pre-qualification notices.Not accepted by seller for offer.

How Many Pre-approval Letters Should you Get?

Buying your dream home is the top priority, which means getting an affordable rate with a personalized lender. You can apply for an unlimited number of pre-approvals and shop around for the best mortgage terms and conditions.

This provides the opportunity to compare mortgage rates, loan amounts, and customer service to see who you’ll go with.

Shop around with confidence and move seamlessly from pre-approval to purchase/refinance with the right lender.

Mortgage Pre-Approval FAQ

Do Pre-approvals Hurt your Credit Score?

Yes, they do. Each mortgage application counts as a hard inquiry on your credit report, decreasing the score by several points. Thankfully, you can apply for multiple lenders within 14 days, and the credit sees the inquiry as only 1 credit check.

We recommend working with our Highly Motivated Vercellino team if you’re not satisfied with the current pre-approval amount or wish to review other options.

How Far in Advance Should I Get Pre-approved for a Mortgage?

You want to get pre-approved as soon as possible if interest rates are good and your dream home is live on the market. If not, the rate may fluctuate, and someone else may buy the home your family has always wanted.

Again, most sellers won’t accept home offers without a certified pre-approval.

Can you Extend a Mortgage Pre-approval?

While you can’t extend a mortgage pre-approval, you can apply for another one.

That’s because your finances may undergo major changes in 90 days. The lender wants to ensure your credit history, debt-to-income ratio (DTI), and other variables haven’t dipped drastically.

Can I Still Get My Interest Rate if the Rate Lock Expires Before the Pre-approval Ends?

By paying a fee, mortgage lenders can extend your interest rate past its original timeline. Only the underwriting department can explain the fee you’ll pay based on your finances and pre-approval letter.

This opens your options since mortgage rate locks last 30-60 days. If it ends before your pre-approval, you’ll have another shot at a lower interest rate.

Keep Up with the Market by Getting Pre-Approved

Even if you have a pre-approval in hand, it may not be the most affordable rate or give you the home loan you need. Time is of the essence if the home your family has always wanted is sitting on Zillow.

Our Highly Motivated Vercellino Team keeps up with this fast-paced market and delivers a pre-approval in record time compared to national brands. You should know exactly how much house you can afford without having to wait on a lender.

We believe buying or refinancing with a mortgage loan should be fun and want to take the stress off your plate. Work with us, and we’ll walk you through each step in a timely manner.

What do you have to lose?

Call Jimmy Vercellino and our team today at (480)-800-8387.

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