The most important mortgage loan documents are:
- Good Faith Estimate – estimated costs you will have to pay before closing
- Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Special Info Booklet – information about home buying process
- Truth in Lending Disclosure Statement (TILA) – information about the cost of credit
- Broker Agreement – the contract about the terms of finding a loan with your broker
- Loan Approval/Commitment – a contract about the terms of the loan itself
- Settlement Statement (sometimes known as HUD-1) – a list of all closing costs and loan disbursements
You will generally receive your mortgage loan documents within these timeframes:
- Good Faith Estimate – within 3 business days of filing loan application
- HUD Special Info Booklet – within 3 business days of filing loan application
- Truth in Lending Disclosure Statement – if you are seeking a purchase money loan, within 3 business days of filing loan application. For a refinancing or home equity loan, most lenders will provide this when you first apply but the requirement is anytime before closing.
- Broker Agreement – immediately upon hiring a broker. If you are not using a broker, you will not receive or need this document.
- Loan Approval/Commitment – some reasonable time before signing final loan documents. Ask for this as soon as possible.
- Settlement Statement – at loan closing, but you should ask to review it one business day before closing.
It is highly advised that you hire a real estate attorney to review and walk through each step of this process with you. Real estate brokers may not have the expertise necessary to answer all of your questions and often may try to sneak in or ignore provisions that are not ideal. An attorney will be able to protect your rights and get you the best deal possible.