The Sunshine State is a popular destination for mobile Americans (as well as expats), and any expert in moving and storage in South Florida will attest to that fact. Between July 2017 and July 2018, the state registered the highest net domestic migration in the United States. Since 2010, Florida has welcomed over one million new residents from all over the country.
Whatever gravitates you toward Florida, there is one thing that might make your relocation aspiration a little less exciting: mortgage shopping. Qualifying for a home loan in today’s real estate landscape is hard, let alone taking out one to buy a house out of state.
So, how can you convince a mortgage lender to approve your loan application when you have not even acclimated to the heat and humidity yet? Below are the things you can do to improve your chance of being a homeowner when you move to Florida.
Think About Your State of Employment
First of all, make sure you have reliable employment and steady income. No lender these days will say yes to your mortgage application if you can’t demonstrate strong assurance that you can handle the repayment.
You should have a job with at least an equal salary when you move to Florida. If you can get a higher-paying position, it is better.
Usually, a lender wants a customer who has been in the same company for 24 months. But you might be given an exception if your career is clearly on an upward trajectory.
What is a big no-no, though, is transitioning to less financially rewarding employment or switching to a different field where you have to start at the bottom. Changing residences and jobs already comes with a lot of uncertainty, and the least you can do is not to give your prospective lender a reason to doubt your capacity to manage your monthly mortgage payment.
Make Your Bank Account Greener
Speaking of repayment capacity, apply for a mortgage only if you have impressive cash and asset reserves. Lenders usually accept customers with enough financial resources not to be behind payments for a couple of months, even when a source of income is significant.
Stocks, bonds, and mutual funds are some of the assets you can use to beef up your credentials. When it comes to your cash reserves, pool all of your money and season it in your bank account for at least two months. Any large deposit 60 days before you talk to a lender will raise some suspicion and increase the number of hoops you have to jump through.
Put a premium on mortgage pre-approval. Unlike pre-qualification, this process carries more weight because it involves closer scrutiny of your credentials. It will give you a better idea of the size of the loan and the interest rate you can get.
If buying a house in Florida and staying there over the long haul are your ultimate goals, strongly consider renting as you settle in. This way, you can focus on one big decision at a time, and you can be in a better state of mind when comparing mortgages.