On The Road To Buying A House: Getting The Loan

We hadn’t heard another word from the lender since December 8, until today. And then, suddenly, I received an email telling me we needed three more things!

  • A Well Certification from the county which says the well water is potable
  • A binding contract from the homeowner’s insurance provider
  • A letter from the termite inspector that says we have contracted to have the house treated for termites and have a new vapor barrier put down in the crawl space.

The first thing I did was email back saying that there is county water at the property–we had to have it turned on for the appraiser. That was quickly cleared up and marked off the list.

Fabgrandpa called the exterminating company and spoke to the termite guy, who knew exactly what we needed to provide to the lender, but he was out in the field and couldn’t get it emailed over until he got to his office later in the day, but we felt sure he would do that as soon as he could.

The last thing was for me to call the homeowner’s insurance provider and ask for the binding contract. She also knew exactly what we needed, but said that the provider that she quoted me rates from has issued a moratorium on providing homeowner’s insurance in this area. She told me she would call and ask if she would still be able to issue policies on the homes she had already quoted before the moratorium was announced. She promised to call me back before the end of the day.

With all that done, we continued on with our plans for the day, which included going to visit my mother, who lives about 45 miles away. We had planned on staying until dinner time, then going to our favorite barbecue place to eat and pick up a plate for her. Meanwhile, while we were on our way, my phone rang again. It was the lender telling us she had emailed a form that needed to be signed by both of us, and wanted us to print it, sign it, scan it, and email it back. Because we were only about a mile from her office, we decided to stop in to sign it in person.

We got to Mama’s house, and told her we had to leave by 4:00 p.m. so we could get home in time to print, sign, scan, and email all that stuff to the lender by 5:00 p.m. We left Mama’s early to go home, and as soon as we got on I-20, my phone rang. Fabgrandpa answered it because I was driving. It was the insurance lady. Because we are using Farm Bureau Insurance, we had to pay a $25 membership fee before she could issue the homeowner’s insurance policy. While Fabgrandpa was having that converstation, HIS cell phone rang. He told the insurance lady that I would pull over to the side of the road and talk to her.

The termite inspector was on the other cell phone, telling us he had emailed a form we needed to print, sign, scan, and email back to him. Fabgrandpa told him we would do that as soon as we got home. I pulled over to the side of the highway as soon as I could, about two exits down the road, and talked to the homeowner’s insurance lady. She needed me to give her a credit card number to cover our Farm Bureau membership fee of $25. She said she had already provided the binding contract to the lender. So, after giving my number over the phone, there we sat on the side of I-20 looking at each other, hoping that this is the last of the mad scramble to provide paperwork to the lender.

When we got home, I had emails from both the termite inspector and insurance lady that included the forms we had to print, sign, scan, and email back to them. When I got through doing all that, I called the lender and asked if they had everything they had asked for today. And they said yes, but we won’t be surprised if they call or email again tomorrow.

On The Road To Buying A House: Getting The Loan

Today was the day we have been working towards: We got an email from the lender’s representative saying we have been approved for the loan. BUT. Yes, I did say BUT. We have to provide them with a little more documentation. The paper pile continues to grow.

We have a monthly deposit to our checking account from an annuity. We were not allowed to use that annuity as proof of income to qualify for the loan because we will only continue to receive it for less than 48 months. But, because the lender scrutinized our checking account statement, we are required to write a letter explaining why we are receiving that amount each month.

Also, because the origninal bank statements I provided were printed by ME off the internet, I have to provide them with either a copy of a bank statement mailed to me from the bank, or one that I have obtained from the bank in person and stamped with their official stamp. I can get that tomorrow.

We had to print off the termite treatment contract, sign it, scan it back in, and email it to the lender. They want positive proof that we have contracted to have the house treated for termites. Done, and emailed.

The last piece of paperwork they are asking for is our proof of employment. This is going to be tough to get. Because we are seasonal workers, we only work for six months out of the year. Each October, Fabgrandpa is taken off the payroll, and placed in “intermittent” status. This means he is still an employee, but he is not working AT THIS TIME. In April, he will be put back on the payroll. The problem is with MY employment status. I am terminated at the end of each season. I have to be re-hired every spring. So, AT THIS TIME, I am no longer employed. If you remember a few days ago, I had to write a letter explaining my seasonal status to the lender. So, if we can not find a person who will sign a form stating we both still have a job, we may not be able to get this loan, even though we told them in the beginning that we have been seasonal workers for more than 11 years. The main problem I had today is that while there are people who are employed year round, this is the OFF season and many people are on furlough until after Christmas. I am not giving up hope, just saying this could be a very difficult hurdle for us.

So, once we get all of those things together and presented to the lender, we should get a closing date. Y’all keep your fingers crossed for us!

On The Road To Buying A House: Getting The Loan

While we are waiting for THE PHONE CALL telling us we have been approved, we had to get the house inspected for termites. The exterminator went out to the property, and crawled under the house to take a look. He did find some evidence of subterranean termites, which is not unusual for Georgia, but he did not see any evidence of damage from them.

Ronnie, the exterminator, sent me an email with a PDF file of that contained a drawing of the house, with marks to indicate where he found evidence of termites. Also included was a letter for the lender, and a tentative contract for treating the house for termites. If we are approved for the loan, we’ll sign the treatment contract and send it to Ronnie, with a copy to the lender’s representative. This inspection cost us $45, but $45 can save you lots of headaches down the road. And so, we wait some more.

On The Road To Buying A House: Getting The Loan

what to expect when buying a house

The House

Today’s assignment was to go by the real estate office and take a check for $4oo for the appraisal. Then we talked to an exterminator to set up a time for him to go out and inspect for termites, and provide a “termite letter” to the lender. This just insures there are no termites in the home, and no termite damage. The termite inspection was $45, which will be paid at closing.

I shopped around by telephone yesterday, and got a quote for homeowners insurance. The policy will cost us $857 a year, plus a $25 membership fee to Farm Bureau. I think this will be paid at closing, but I could be wrong. I may have to pay for it before closing. Not sure exactly what the time frame is for it.

I think we have provided everything we needed to the lender. Now we wait for the approval, which we have been told can take up to two weeks.

So far, we have paid the following expenses to get to where we are now: Waiting for approval.

  • $500 earnest money
  • $150 winterizing fee (to have the house winterized  after the appraiser is done and the water is turned off)
  • $50 deposit to have the water turned on
  • $400 for the appraisal fee

Of that, only the $500 earnest money is refundable if for some reason the loan is not approved. The rest is just the chance we take that our loan WILL be approved. We are both still excited to be buying a house, but it really is a nerve wracking experience so far!

On The Road To Buying A House: Getting The Loan

Today was we met with the lender again, this time to fill out the official paperwork to apply for the mortgage loan. When she called to make the appointment with us, she told us to expect to spend at least an hour there. OH. MY. WORD! There was a ton of paperwork to discuss and sign. Before we were finished, we had signed or initialed 52 pieces of paper!

lots of paperwork for buying a house

Just look at all that paperwork!

After we finished with all of that paperwork, we went to the post office to buy a money order to send off to another company in order to activate utilities so that the appraiser will be able to verify that everything works like it should when he (or she) goes out to do the appraisal inspection. Because it is getting below freezing at night, once the appraiser has finished, and the water is turned off again, they will send someone out to winterize the plumbing. We were required to send the money order to cover the $150 cost of the winterizing.

Our next top was at the electric company to fill out yet another form, so that they can turn the electricity on by the day the appraiser will be there. There, because it is an electric membership corporation, we had to pay a $15 membership fee, and a $20 service charge for turning on the power, but they will bill us for that on our first bill. And, if our credit had not been good enough, we would have been charged a deposit that would cover two months of the average electric bill for that property. Since our credit is good, there was no deposit required.

Then we made our way to the water department. Another piece of paper added to the stack, and a $50 deposit for the water service. $10 of that is a non-refundable service charge. And with that, we were finished for the day.

Here are all the forms we had to read and sign today with the lender:

  • Uniform Residential Loan Application (5 pages)
  • Borrower’s Certificate
  • Borrower Consent for Social Security Administration to Verify Social Security Number
  • Fees Worksheet
  • Good Faith Estimate (3 pages)
  • Truth In Lending Disclosure Statement (2 pages)
  • Intent to Proceed With Application
  • Anti-Steering Certificate
  • Written List of Service Providers
  • Georgia Attorney Preference Checklist
  • Credit Inquiry Explanation Letter (2 pages)
  • Borrower Signature Authorization
  • Borrower’s Certification and Authorization
  • Disclosure Notices ( we had to sign this one in 4 places)
  • Equal Credit Opportunity Act
  • Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973
  • Mortgage Loan Origination Agreement
  • patriot Act Information Disclosure
  • What does XXXXXXXXX Mortgage Group, LLC do With Your Personal Information?n(2 pages)
  • Notice to Applicant of right To Receive Copy of Appraisal Report
  • Servicing Disclosure Statement
  • Request of Transcript of Tax Return
  • Georgia Department of Banking and Finance Disclosure Requirements
  • Your Credit Score and the Price You Pay for Credit (3 pages for each of us)
  • Mortgage Fraud Investigation statement
  • Housing financial Discrimination Act of 1977 Fair Lending Notice
  • Mortgage Disclosure Improvement Act (MDIA) Affidavit
  • A page telling us where to find the Settlement Costs Booklet that explains the closing process ( http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/documents/huddoc?id=DOC_12617.pdf )
  • FHA Disclosures Amendatory Clause/Real Estate Certification
  • Borrower’s Acknowledgement of Disclosures

These were used  because Fabgrandpa is a Veteran and is applying for a VA loan:

  • Department of Veterans Affairs Debt Questionnaire
  • Department of Veterans Affairs Federal Collection Policy Notice
  • Counseling Checklist for Military Homebuyers
  • Department of Veterans Affairs Request for Certificate of Eligibility
  • Department of Veterans Affairs Rights of VA Loan Borrowers (Important Notice)
  • Military Activation/Deployment Certification
  • Nearest Living Relative Information
  • Child Care Certification for VA Loans (we thought this one was hilarious because our youngest child is 36!)

That is quite a stack of paper to add to the existing pile. Tomorrow, we have to create some more! The lender still needs:

  • The last paystubs for each of us
  • 2 months bank statements ( and if you are following along, yes, I already provided that, but another month has gone by since we provided them)
  • Printed bank history from the last statement forward to today
  • A letter from me explaining our seasonal employment status

When we go back to the lender on Friday, we will need to take a $400 check for the appraisal, and a quote for homeowners insurance. My work for this week is starting to wear me out and it is only Tuesday!