What is the mortgage application process?
Learn about initial and closing disclosures plus much more
You've applied for a loan with Freedom Mortgage to buy or refinance a house. What happens next? Here's what you can expect from our mortgage application process. We’re committed to making it as simple as possible!
Step 1: Choose the method of delivery for disclosures
Once you submit your mortgage application, the first thing we’ll do is ask permission to send you mortgage documents electronically which you can sign electronically too. (We call this “E-Consent.”) We’ll do this by sending you an email with a login link. You may choose to receive your disclosures electronically or via U.S. Mail.
Step 2: Read and sign your Initial Mortgage Disclosures
Next we’ll ask you to review your initial loan documents. These documents include your Loan Estimate, which shows details such as:
- Loan term and type
- Loan amount
- Interest rate
- Estimated total monthly payment
- Estimated closing costs
- Estimated cash to close
Please review and sign all required documents promptly so we can move forward with your loan. We are not able to process your loan application unless you sign the loan disclosures where required.
Step 3: Confirm you are ready to move forward with the loan by providing your Intent to Proceed
We’ll also need you to provide your Intent to Proceed with the loan application. Providing your Intent to Proceed does not require you to accept a mortgage we may offer. Rather it provides us with your permission to move forward with your application based on the loan parameters outlined in the Loan Estimate.
Step 4: Help us as we underwrite your mortgage application
Once we have all requested information (including all documents required to be signed), our underwriters will examine your application. Our criteria for approving your mortgage will vary based on your loan type and whether you are buying or refinancing a house. These will determine your credit, debt, income, and asset requirements. Learn more about mortgage underwriting.
Your Customer Advocate will also contact you during underwriting. Your advocate will guide you through the process and answer your questions. Your advocate may request additional documents from you. It's important that you respond to these requests promptly so we can keep your loan moving forward.
About title searches
While we are reviewing your mortgage application, we will perform a title search. This is a routine step and you do not need to do anything to help us complete it.
A title search examines the history of the home's ownership. For purchase transactions, the title search verifies the seller is the legal owner of the house you are buying. And it makes sure there are no liens against the property, which are claims that result from an unpaid debt.
We typically perform these searches when you are buying as well as refinancing a home. We require all liens on a property be resolved before we approve a mortgage. Learn more about title searches.
About home appraisals
When you are buying a house, an appraisal will likely be required to confirm the home's fair market value. For a refinance, you may or may not need an appraisal depending on the requirements of the loan. An appraiser will contact you to schedule an appointment to visit your home. The appraiser will need access to the inside and the outside of your house to perform their appraisal. Learn more about home appraisals.
About home inspections
Some government-backed mortgages may require a home inspection. If an inspection is required, an inspector will contact you to schedule an appointment. The inspector will need access to the inside and the outside of your house to complete their work.
A home inspection identifies problems that need to be addressed before the sale closes. These problems can include structural problems, issues with the electrical, plumbing, or heating and cooling systems, a leaky roof, or termite damage. Homebuyers often request an inspection of the home they want to buy, too. Learn more about home inspections.
About approving your mortgage application
Our underwriters will review your credit, debt, income, and assets to see if they meet our approval requirements. If they do – and the subject property has no appraisal or other issues – we’ll be happy to approve your application. We'll contact you to let you know that your loan application is approved.
Step 5: Read and acknowledge receipt of the Closing Disclosure
After your mortgage application is approved, the next step is to read and acknowledge your Closing Disclosure. This disclosure includes final details about your mortgage including:
- Loan term and type
- Loan amount
- Interest rate
- Total monthly payment
- Closing costs
- Cash to close
You will want to check all of the information and make sure it is correct. Please check that your name and the names of any co-borrowers on the loan exactly match your names as they appear on your government-issued IDs. Even minor differences between how your names appear on the loan documents and your identification can cause delays.
Your Closing Disclosure also contains information about you and any co-borrowers that may be on the loan, the subject property that will secure the loan, and a summary of costs and fees associated with the mortgage. It provides details about escrow accounts (if applicable), how partial and late payments are handled, and whether state law provides protection from liability after foreclosure.
Federal law requires that you receive the Closing Disclosure at least three business days prior to closing.
Step 6: Scheduling your closing date
We'll contact you so you can choose a closing date, time, and location that is convenient for you. We'll review the steps to closing your mortgage, making sure you know what you and any co-borrower need to bring to closing and what you need to do at closing.
Step 7: Close on your mortgage
At closing, you'll be asked to sign the documents in your final closing package, make a down payment if you are buying a house, and pay closing costs. Closing costs can include property tax payments and homeowners insurance premiums that may be due soon after closing. They can also include money needed to establish your escrow account.
The legal requirements for closings vary by state. Some states require spouses or witnesses to attend closing. An attorney may have to conduct your closing depending on the state where you live too.
When you are buying a house, you become the legal owner of the home and the seller gets their money when the mortgage closes. When you are refinancing, you pay off your old mortgage and replace it with a new one at closing.
Step 8: Begin making your mortgage payments
After closing, you will make your mortgage payments throughout the life of the loan to your mortgage servicer. At Freedom Mortgage, we typically service our customers’ mortgages. That means you will make your payments to us.
Each month, you will receive a statement from us that shows your principal, interest, and escrow payments as well as your loan balance and any changes to your payment. Depending on when you close your loan, your first payment may not be due for 30 or more days. You can see your loan details on paper statements or through your online account.
Last reviewed and updated May 2023 by Freedom Mortgage Corporation.