Frequently Asked Mortgage Questions


How long does the loan application process take?

Many details factor into approving a loan application. Beginning from the time of your initial inquiry, it generally takes between four to eight weeks.

What could cause a delay in approving my loan?

If you do not notify the lender of certain changes that may have occurred between submission of the loan application and funding of the loan, or you do not provide complete and accurate information up front, the approval process may be delayed. Examples are: job change, salary increase or decrease, additional debt incurred, change in marital status, and not disclosing credit problems.

What is the difference between prequalification and preapproval?

Prequalification is an estimate of a prospective loan applicant’s borrowing power. It is a determination from the lender that the applicant would most likely qualify for credit and a determination of the credit amount.

Preapproval, a more formal and complete process, occurs after the applicant has submitted the loan application and supplied the lender with the required financial and employment information. The lender will have also run a credit report. It the underwriter’s decision that the loan applicant is qualified.

Note: neither preapproval nor prequalification is a guaranteed loan commitment.

What factors determine how much can I borrow?

Lenders and underwriters review your income, expenses, assets, debts, and credit history to calculate how much you can afford to pay for your mortgage every month. Qualifying guidelines for special programs (VA loans or first-time homebuyer programs) are more lenient than they are for conventional mortgages.

Usually, we can provide a quick estimate. Just call to speak with one of our loan officers at 732-389-9222.

Is there a prepayment penalty?

No. Prepayment penalty fees are prohibited in New Jersey.

What is the minimum down payment required?

As a rule, between 3% and 20% of the home’s purchase price is required as a down payment. The higher the percentage of the down payment, the lower the interest rate will be, along with better terms. You may be required to purchase private mortgage insurance (PMI) if you are unable to provide a sufficient down payment.

What is loan-to-value ratio?

Loan-to-value ratio (LTV) is a risk factor that calculates if the lender can recoup losses (due to nonpayment) by selling the home. It is one of the determining factors lenders use when qualifying borrowers for a mortgage.

The LTV ratio represents the amount of a first mortgage lien as a percentage of the total appraised value of the property. For instance, if someone borrows $180,000 to buy a house worth $200,000, the LTV ratio is $180,000/$200,000 or 90%.

I already have a mortgage with another lender. If I switch to Atlantis, can I borrow more money?

Yes. When you switch from another lender, it is possible to increase the loan amount as long as it’s used for a legitimate purpose and the total loan does not exceed the constraints of loan-to-value ratio.

Does Atlantis offer mortgages for any type of home?

Yes. Atlantis provides mortgages for any kind of permanent property, whether it is a main residence, vacation home, or rental property.  

My fixed or discounted rate deal is about to end. What happens next?

Two months before the end of the rate term, we will contact you to arrange a new, fixed rate deal.

Why do I need a survey or valuation?

A valuation provides the latest property assessment to ensure our loan-to-value conditions are met. A survey is needed when purchasing an older property to alert the buyer of any defects that are expensive to repair and could affect the property’s value.

How will Atlantis keep me updated on the status of my loan?

Atlantis will contact you weekly, and we are available anytime to review the status of your appraisal, survey, loan approval, homeowner’s insurance, and title insurance.

What makes up the closing costs?

Appraisal fees, title search, survey, document preparation, recording fees, and taxes make up the closing costs.

Where will the closing be held?

Purchase loan closings take place at an attorney’s office; however, refinancing loan closings usually take place at your home.