Bing.com ads pixel

FAQ

FAQ

Mortgages have a lot of moving pieces. Explore answers to some of the most frequently asked questions in the mortgage industry.

Begin by Selecting a Category

Mortgages

Will applying for a mortgage affect my credit?

Before you enter the mortgage process, your Loan Officer will need to run your credit to confirm your eligibility. To let you explore your loan options with no impact to your credit score, we will conduct a soft credit inquiry. After we explore your loan options together and collect your loan documents, a hard credit pull will be done, which impacts your credit score slightly. Multiple hard credit inquiries made within a 30-day period will only count as one inquiry.

What if I don't have perfect credit?

You don’t need perfect credit for a mortgage refinance. If you received an offer letter from us stating that you’re pre-approved, then your credit at the time we sent you the letter met our minimum credit requirements. Please note that we will still have to order a full credit report, as stated above.

What documents do I need to apply for a mortgage?

For official mortgage approval, you will need to provide:
Paystubs from the last 30 days
W-2 forms from the last 2 years
Tax returns from the last 2 years
If other documents are needed for your unique situation, your Loan Officer will reach out and walk you through the additional requirements.

Are there any application fees?

When you work with us, there is no mortgage application fee. There is no cost or obligation to find out which programs and terms you are pre-approved for or will qualify for.

What are lending fees?

Lending fees and closing costs pay for the origination, and funding of your loan. They can include items like: an origination fee, a discount fee, a processing fee, and an underwriting fee. For refinance customers, these costs are typically rolled into your loan, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront. Closing costs are often different for every consumer. They vary depending on loan type, property location, and other factors. Your fees and closing costs will be presented with your loan options from the start, so there are no surprises.

About Our Letter

If I receive an offer letter, am I already approved or qualified for a loan?

If your letter states you are pre-approved or pre-qualified for a loan, then you have already passed our initial criteria for obtaining a loan. To receive a mortgage, we must still verify your income, credit, employment history, and any other financial factors.

How do you pre-approve and pre-qualify people?

We have certain legally specified criteria—like a minimum credit score—and ask a consumer reporting company for a list of people in the company’s database who meet the criteria.

Did you pull my credit to get my information?

No, we did not pull your credit, and we don’t have a copy of your credit report. We buy credit report data from third-party credit companies, and mortgage information is public record. We use these tools to determine your pre-approved loan amount.

Refinance

What closing costs are involved in refinancing?

Refinance costs and fees pay for the processing of your loan. They can vary, depending on the loan type, property location, title company, and more. These costs can include: an origination fee, an underwriting/processing fee, title insurance, a title attorney fee, an upfront funding fee (VA loans), upfront mortgage insurance (for FHA loans), and more. Your fees and closing costs costs will be presented with your loan options from the start, so there are no surprises. Closing costs and fees are typically rolled into your loan, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront.

How much cash will I need to refinance my home?

There are no out-of-pocket expenses prior to your refinance loan closing. The rest of the fees and closing costs associated with your new loan can be financed into the loan amount, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront.

Do I need to have my home appraised?

Yes, refinance loans require a home appraisal. At Meridian, we advance the cost of your initial home appraisal (up to $600). This allows you to explore your loan options with no upfront costs until you close. Please see Notices for more information on our Appraisal Policy.

What is the $10,000 cash-back option?

The $10,000 cash-back option is an additional amount of money you can decide to take out of your home equity. This amount (or any customized amount you designate) is added onto your current loan amount when refinancing. This cash-back option may be used for any purpose that you want, such as paying for home improvements, school tuition, paying off other debts like credit cards or car loans, or replenishing your savings. On average, Meridian borrowers choose cash-back amounts of between $10,000 and $15,000.

What is loan-to-value (LTV) and how is it calculated?

Your loan-to-value ratio (LTV) is the percentage of your property that is being financed. For example, if your home value is $100,000 and you obtain a mortgage of $80,000, your LTV is 80%. Lenders have limitations on how much you can borrow against your property. Typically, lenders consider loans with higher LTVs high-risk loans. As a result, most lenders will add private mortgage insurance (PMI) payments onto a loan until it reaches an LTV of 80%.

How long will my refinance take to process, and when will I receive my money?

Typically, refinance loans take around 30 to 60 business days to close. You’ll receive your funds within 7 business days from the date you close.

Can I stop making payments on my bills?

No, keep making your monthly payments on time while we process your refinance loan. Missing a payment can adversely affect your credit score and impact your loan eligibility. If you have special circumstances, please contact your Loan Officer at 877-878-0100.

Do you refinance manufactured or mobile homes?

Yes! We do offer refinances for manufactured and mobile homes.

Can I still refinance if I don’t have perfect credit?

Yes. Most loans require a credit score of 620 to qualify, but we may be able to help homeowners with lower scores. If you have a lower credit score, please be aware your options may be more limited.

VA Refinance

What are VA Mortgage Guaranty Benefits?

The VA helps servicemembers, Veterans, and their families obtain and manage home loans by offering various services and benefits. These benefits include (but aren’t limited to): lower interest rates and closing costs than Conventional Loans, an option to take cash-out, grants for qualifying disabled Veterans, Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance, and more. To learn more about benefits available to Veterans through VA, click here to read the VA’s benefits summary pamphlet.

Am I eligible for a VA loan refinance?

Active-duty service members, Veterans, National Guard members, Reserve members, and certain surviving spouses may qualify for Veterans benefits. If you are unsure of your VA eligibility, visit the Veterans Benefits Administration page to learn more or call us at 877-878-0100 to speak with a Loan Officer.

If I had a VA home loan in the past, can I get another one?

Yes. Borrowers who previously received a VA home loan can apply for and obtain a new VA homprocessinge loan.

What is the funding fee for VA loans for?

The funding fee is sent to the VA once the loan funds. The fee serves as insurance that helps protect the government against VA mortgage defaults. Some Veterans and their spouses are exempt from paying the funding fee, including first-time VA homebuyers, disabled Veterans, and surviving spouses.

Can I get cash out with my VA loan?

Yes! With a VA loan you can take cash out when you refinance. With this extra cash, you can pay off other debts, improve your home, replenish your savings, or spend it however you wish. The amount of cash you can take out will depend upon the equity that you have in your home. Your equity is the difference between the appraised value of your home and how much you still owe on your mortgage.

Do I have to pay for the well, septic, and pest inspections, when required?

No. Meridian will pay for VA-required well, septic, and pest inspections for borrowers obtaining a VA loan when the inspections are required.

What are the closing costs for a VA refinance?

Closing costs and fees pay for the processing of your loan. They can vary, depending on the loan type, property location, title company, and more. These costs can include: an origination fee, an underwriting/processing fee, title insurance, a title attorney fee, an upfront funding fee, and more. These and all other costs will be presented with your loan options from the start, so there are no surprises. Costs and fees are typically rolled into your loan, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront.

Are there special VA mortgage benefits for disabled Veterans and surviving spouses?

Qualifying disabled Veterans and surviving spouses are exempt from paying the VA funding fee. If you are unsure whether you qualify for this exemption, visit the Veterans Benefits Administration page to learn more or call us at 877-878-0100 to speak with a Loan Officer.

Home Purchase

What do I need to buy a home?

First, you need a minimum credit score of 620 or more to qualify for most loan programs. Second, you need two years of consistent employment history, and you need to have been at the same company for at least 6 months. Third, you need to have money saved to make a down payment on a home and pay closing costs. NOTE: Veterans or active servicemembers eligible for VA benefits may qualify for a loan that requires a 0% down payment.

How much should I expect to pay for a down payment and other mortgage costs?

Loans require anywhere from a 3.5% down payment to a 20% down payment, depending on the loan type you qualify for. For example, a $150,000 home would likely require a down payment of between $5,250 (3.5%) and $30,000 (20%). Closing costs and lending fees for a $150,000 loan may average between $3,000 and $7,500. The actual amount depends on the state and local taxes, municipal recording fees, and other costs associated with the home you buy.

Are there any tax breaks or benefits involved with purchasing a home?

In most states, you can write-off a number of costs when you buy a home, including: some mortgage interest, property taxes, private mortgage insurance (PMI) payments/fees, and more.

VA Home Purchase

How do I know if I qualify for a VA mortgage?

Active-duty service members, Veterans, National Guard members, Reserve members, and certain surviving spouses may qualify for Veterans benefits. If you are unsure of your VA eligibility, visit the Veterans Benefits Administration page to learn more or call us at 877-878-0100 to speak with a Loan Officer.

Can I have a co-signer/co-borrower with a VA mortgage?

Yes, as long as the VA-eligible individual is listed as the primary borrower, you can have a co-signer/co-borrower.

What is the minimum down payment I can make?

VA home loans do not require a down payment as long as the sales price isn’t higher than the home's appraised value. That means 100% of your loan can be financed, without paying private mortgage insurance (PMI).

Can I use my VA benefits to purchase a home if I’ve used my VA benefits before?

Yes. You can use your VA benefits again, but you may have to pay the VA funding fee.

Can a VA mortgage be used for a second home or income property?

No. You may only use a VA mortgage to finance your primary residence. For second homes or income properties, you will most likely have to use a Conventional Loan.

Will applying for a mortgage affect my credit?

Before you enter the mortgage process, your Loan Officer will need to run your credit to confirm your eligibility. To let you explore your loan options with no impact to your credit score, we will conduct a soft credit inquiry. After we explore your loan options together and collect your loan documents, a hard credit pull will be done, which impacts your credit score slightly. Multiple hard credit inquiries made within a 30-day period will only count as one inquiry.

What if I don’t have perfect credit?

You don’t need perfect credit for a mortgage refinance. If you received an offer letter from us stating that you’re pre-approved, then your credit at the time we sent you the letter met our minimum credit requirements. Please note that we will still have to order a full credit report, as stated above.

What documents do I need to apply for a mortgage?

For official mortgage approval, you will need to provide:
Paystubs from the last 30 days
W-2 forms from the last 2 years
Tax returns from the last 2 years
If other documents are needed for your unique situation, your Loan Officer will reach out and walk you through the additional requirements.

Are there any application fees?

When you work with us, there is no mortgage application fee. There is no cost or obligation to find out which programs and terms you are pre-approved for or will qualify for.

What are lending fees?

Lending fees and closing costs pay for the origination, and funding of your loan. They can include items like: an origination fee, a discount fee, a processing fee, and an underwriting fee. For refinance customers, these costs are typically rolled into your loan, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront. Closing costs are often different for every consumer. They vary depending on loan type, property location, and other factors. Your fees and closing costs will be presented with your loan options from the start, so there are no surprises.

If I receive an offer letter, am I already approved or qualified for a loan?

If your letter states you are pre-approved or pre-qualified for a loan, then you have already passed our initial criteria for obtaining a loan. To receive a mortgage, we must still verify your income, credit, employment history, and any other financial factors.

How do you pre-approve and pre-qualify people?

We have certain legally specified criteria—like a minimum credit score—and ask a consumer reporting company for a list of people in the company’s database who meet the criteria.

Did you pull my credit to get my information?

No, we did not pull your credit, and we don’t have a copy of your credit report. We buy credit report data from third-party credit companies, and mortgage information is public record. We use these tools to determine your pre-approved loan amount.

What closing costs are involved in refinancing?

Refinance costs and fees pay for the processing of your loan. They can vary, depending on the loan type, property location, title company, and more. These costs can include: an origination fee, an underwriting/processing fee, title insurance, a title attorney fee, an upfront funding fee (VA loans), upfront mortgage insurance (for FHA loans), and more. Your fees and closing costs costs will be presented with your loan options from the start, so there are no surprises. Closing costs and fees are typically rolled into your loan, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront.

How much cash will I need to refinance my home?

There are no out-of-pocket expenses prior to your refinance loan closing. The rest of the fees and closing costs associated with your new loan can be financed into the loan amount, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront.

Do I need to have my home appraised?

Yes, refinance loans require a home appraisal. At Meridian, we advance the cost of your initial home appraisal (up to $600). This allows you to explore your loan options with no upfront costs until you close. Please see Notices for more information on our Appraisal Policy.

What is the $10,000 cash-back option?

The $10,000 cash-back option is an additional amount of money you can decide to take out of your home equity. This amount (or any customized amount you designate) is added onto your current loan amount when refinancing. This cash-back option may be used for any purpose that you want, such as paying for home improvements, school tuition, paying off other debts like credit cards or car loans, or replenishing your savings. On average, Meridian borrowers choose cash-back amounts of between $10,000 and $15,000.

What is loan-to-value (LTV) and how is it calculated?

Your loan-to-value ratio (LTV) is the percentage of your property that is being financed. For example, if your home value is $100,000 and you obtain a mortgage of $80,000, your LTV is 80%. Lenders have limitations on how much you can borrow against your property. Typically, lenders consider loans with higher LTVs high-risk loans. As a result, most lenders will add private mortgage insurance (PMI) payments onto a loan until it reaches an LTV of 80%.

How long will my refinance take to process, and when will I receive my money?

Typically, refinance loans take around 30 to 60 business days to close. You’ll receive your funds within 7 business days from the date you close.

Can I stop making payments on my bills?

No, keep making your monthly payments on time while we process your refinance loan. Missing a payment can adversely affect your credit score and impact your loan eligibility. If you have special circumstances, please contact your Loan Officer at 877-878-0100.

Do you refinance manufactured or mobile homes?

Yes! We do offer refinances for manufactured and mobile homes.

Can I still refinance if I don’t have perfect credit?

Yes. Most loans require a credit score of 620 to qualify, but we may be able to help homeowners with lower scores. If you have a lower credit score, please be aware your options may be more limited.

What are VA Mortgage Guaranty Benefits?

The VA helps servicemembers, Veterans, and their families obtain and manage home loans by offering various services and benefits. These benefits include (but aren’t limited to): lower interest rates and closing costs than Conventional Loans, an option to take cash-out, grants for qualifying disabled Veterans, Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance, and more. To learn more about benefits available to Veterans through VA, click here to read the VA’s benefits summary pamphlet.

Am I eligible for a VA loan refinance?

Active-duty service members, Veterans, National Guard members, Reserve members, and certain surviving spouses may qualify for Veterans benefits. If you are unsure of your VA eligibility, visit the Veterans Benefits Administration page to learn more or call us at 877-878-0100 to speak with a Loan Officer.

If I had a VA home loan in the past, can I get another one?

Yes. Borrowers who previously received a VA home loan can apply for and obtain a new VA home loan.

What is the funding fee for VA loans for?

The funding fee is sent to the VA once the loan funds. The fee serves as insurance that helps protect the government against VA mortgage defaults. Some Veterans and their spouses are exempt from paying the funding fee, including first-time VA homebuyers, disabled Veterans, and surviving spouses.

Can I get cash-out with my VA loan?

Yes! With a VA loan you can take cash out when you refinance. With this extra cash, you can pay off other debts, improve your home, replenish your savings, or spend it however you wish. The amount of cash you can take out will depend upon the equity that you have in your home. Your equity is the difference between the appraised value of your home and how much you still owe on your mortgage.

Do I have to pay for the well, septic, and pest inspections, when required?

No. Meridian will pay for VA-required well, septic, and pest inspections for borrowers obtaining a VA loan when the inspections are required.

What are the closing costs for a VA refinance?

Closing costs and fees pay for the processing of your loan. They can vary, depending on the loan type, property location, title company, and more. These costs can include: an origination fee, an underwriting/processing fee, title insurance, a title attorney fee, an upfront funding fee, and more. These and all other costs will be presented with your loan options from the start, so there are no surprises. Costs and fees are typically rolled into your loan, so you don’t have to pay anything upfront.

Are there special VA mortgage benefits for disabled Veterans and surviving spouses?

Qualifying disabled Veterans and surviving spouses are exempt from paying the VA funding fee. If you are unsure whether you qualify for this exemption, visit the Veterans Benefits Administration page to learn more or call us at 877-878-0100 to speak with a Loan Officer.

What do I need to buy a home?

First, you need a minimum credit score of 620 or more to qualify for most loan programs. Second, you need two years of consistent employment history, and you need to have been at the same company for at least 6 months. Third, you need to have money saved to make a down payment on a home and pay closing costs. NOTE: Veterans or active servicemembers eligible for VA benefits may qualify for a loan that requires a 0% down payment.

How much should I expect to pay for a down payment and other mortgage costs?

Loans require anywhere from a 3.5% down payment to a 20% down payment, depending on the loan type you qualify for. For example, a $150,000 home would likely require a down payment of between $5,250 (3.5%) and $30,000 (20%). Closing costs and lending fees for a $150,000 loan may average between $3,000 and $7,500. The actual amount depends on the state and local taxes, municipal recording fees, and other costs associated with the home you buy.

Are there any tax breaks or benefits involved with purchasing a home?

In most states, you can write-off a number of costs when you buy a home, including: some mortgage interest, property taxes, private mortgage insurance (PMI) payments/fees, and more.

How do I know if I qualify for a VA mortgage?

Active-duty service members, Veterans, National Guard members, Reserve members, and certain surviving spouses may qualify for Veterans benefits. If you are unsure of your VA eligibility, visit the Veterans Benefits Administration page to learn more or call us at 877-878-0100 to speak with a Loan Officer.

Can I have a co-signer/co-borrower with a VA mortgage?

Yes, as long as the VA-eligible individual is listed as the primary borrower, you can have a co-signer/co-borrower.

What is the minimum down payment I can make?

VA home loans do not require a down payment as long as the sales price isn’t higher than the home's appraised value. That means 100% of your loan can be financed, without paying private mortgage insurance (PMI).

Can I use my VA benefits to purchase a home if I’ve used my VA benefits before?

Yes. You can use your VA benefits again, but you may have to pay the VA funding fee.

Can a VA mortgage be used for a second home or income property?

No. You may only use a VA mortgage to finance your primary residence. For second homes or income properties, you will most likely have to use a Conventional Loan.

Any more questions about mortgages and home financing? Our Loan Officers are here to help.

Get My Options
2021-08-20T15:31:07-04:00