Pre-Approval vs. Pre-Qualification: which one do I need in Hawaii?

When you are first thinking about buying a home, there are a couple of key phrases that aways pop up:

”Call now to get pre-qualified”

“Pre-approval in two days or less”

What’s the difference between the two of these, and more importantly, which one is better to have here in Hawaii?

Pre-qualification is a more informal discussion with the lender and everyone is customer-supplied, but not fully verified. On the other hand, pre-approval is a much more comprehensive process and the lender will have to do an extensive check on your financial history, as well as pull a current credit score.

From here you’ll have an exact figure of how much house you can afford as well as a conditional commitment on that loan size.

Here in Hawaii, when you are presenting an offer to a seller you’re in a much stronger position to do so with a pre-approval letter, and not only a pre-approval letter, but a letter that’s been written from a lender who is on-island so they can make sure your house will close on time (and of course, make sure you can Own On Kauai).