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When you apply or pre-qualify for an FHA home loan, there are several important pieces of information required. These are designed to give the lender the information needed to start the approval process.

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What is Needed From Your FHA Loan Applications

March 4, 2013 - When you apply or pre-qualify for an FHA home loan, there are several important pieces of information required. These are designed to give the lender the information needed to start the approval process. It's true that a home loan application or even an online pre-qualification form can be a bit time consuming, but you are basically providing all the relevant details needed to get started.

If you've never applied or pre-qualified before, what do you need to provide the lender in order to begin? The application is designed to help the lender obtain a range of details and verifications including:

 general mortgage "credit analysis" documents
 evidence of Social Security Number
 verification of deposit
 verification of employment
 federal income tax returns
 appraisal documentation

That list is reprinted from the FHA loan rulebook for lenders, HUD 4155.1, which also says, "Lenders must obtain the most recent documents required to perform the mortgage credit analysis.

"Most recent" refers to the most recent document available at the time the loan application is made." If your most current paperwork (tax forms, for example) are from one year ago, include those since they are the most recent. If you have a collection of pay stubs or similar paperwork, use the one most recently issued.

"General mortgage credit analysis documents" can include credit reports, which must be obtained directly from the reporting agency. This paperwork cannot come from the borrower, even if you have access to them.

Social Security number evidence may be as simple as providing a xerox copy of your Social Security card or filling out the number on the credit application form. Your lender will tell you what is needed in this case if it isn't listed on the application itself.

"Verification of deposit" may include bank statements or other documents or you may be required to provide an account number for the loan officer to check.

"Verification of employment" may include both pay stubs or other proof of employment, but the lender may also call your employer to verify you are still working at the company--a standard practice.

This is not an exhaustive list of the paperwork and other data needed to process an FHA mortgage loan application, but it does give you an idea of how the loan application process works. If you don't have all of this information ready before pre-qualifying or applying, take the time to get it all together in one place before getting started--you'll save a great deal of time.