Step 2 for Buyers: Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage


Once you’ve decided on a Realtor to represent you, Step 2 to buying a home is to get pre-approved by a mortgage lender. It is not in your best interest to put an offer in on a home unless you’ve been pre-approved. In addition, it’s important that you have an understanding of how much you can comfortably afford to spend on a home, what size of down payment will be required, what your monthly payments will be, what interest rate you qualify for, and how much you’ll be paying each month in property taxes, etc.  

Having a good mortgage lender is a crucial part of ensuring a smooth transaction.  Working with a bad mortgage lender can make the process more difficult for everyone involved and put your purchase in jeopardy of not closing on time or at all.  You also might end up regretting the lender you chose for years if you end up paying a higher interest rate than you should have if you had shopped your loan through various lenders. I highly recommend using the services of a local mortgage lender who is knowledgable of all the lending requirements and limitations on many of Maui’s short term rental and investment properties. It’s important to work with the best.  I recommend:

Kellie Pali-Cruz
Creative Financial Hawaii

Brady Spangler
Axia Home Loans

Dan Bardenhagen
Wells Fargo Home Loans

Michael Belmudes
Caliber Home Loans

Getting a Pre-Approval Letter 

Generally, once you supply  your lender with your information you should receive a pre-approval letter within 2-3 business days.  The lender may ask for additional documentation.  They are not trying to be difficult by asking for additional documentation, rather, after the housing bubble burst, underwriters became much stricter regarding the loan approval process so a lot more documentation is needed today than it was 10 years ago.  In addition to receiving a pre-approval letter which shows the amount you can afford to purchase, you should ask your lender to show you what that pre-approval amounts into in terms of a monthly mortgage payment plus any PMI, taxes, and insurance. That way you can make sure you are comfortable with what your monthly housing payment will be at that pre-approval letter. Once you’ve received your pre-approval letter, forward it to us for your file so we can have it when we are ready to submit an offer.

Questions about the pre-approval process? Just call me at 808-280-3054 or email me at