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Frequently Asked Questions About Mortgages

​​Get answers to your questions about mortgage loans and M&T's mortgage lending process.​​​​​​DIS-208*-DIS​

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  • ​An account established to pay property taxes, homeowner's insurance and flood insurance, if applicable. Funds for your tax and insurance payments are collected as part of the monthly payment, and the lender makes payments on your behalf.  

  • ​​​Your lien release or mortgage discharge will be mailed to the address we have on file 10 business days after the loan is paid in full.

  • ​​​​​View more information about bank-owned properties, or call M&T Mortgage Servicing at 1-800-724-2224.

  • ​​Points (also called discount points) are an amount paid at mortgage closing to lower the interest rate charged on your loan. Each point is equal to 1% of the loan amount. By paying points, you can lower your interest rate and monthly payment amount over the term of your loan. Points vary by loan program and market conditions. Paying points to lower your interest rate is optional.

  • ​​Private Mortgage Insurance is required on most conventional loan programs when purchasing a home with less than a 20% down payment or refinancing with less than 20% equity. This insurance protects the lender against losses if the borrower does not repay the loan.

  • ​​Title is a document that outlines the ownership of a property and the right to use it. Owner's title insurance protects the owner against most unforeseen problems and financial losses resulting from issues related to the property title.

  • ​​APR is a calculation expressing the total cost of credit as a yearly percentage. An APR must be provided to the borrower under the Federal Truth in Lending Act. It includes upfront costs (prepaid interest) and any other finance charges associated with obtaining the loan. For this reason, the APR is usually higher than the interest rate on the mortgage note.

  • ​​The Loan Estimate is a federally required notice that provides details of the cost of obtaining a mortgage loan and the terms of the mortgage loan for which you have applied. This notice includes the Annual Percentage Rate (APR). The APR should not be confused with the mortgage note's (interest) rate, which is used to calculate the loan payment.​

  • ​​Yes, the borrower receives a copy of the home appraisal.

  • ​​If mortgage rates increase or decrease after you've locked in a rate, your locked rate will hold for the duration of your chosen lock period.​

  • LTV is a comparison between the value of your loan and the value of your property, typically expressed as a percentage. For example, if you are borrowing $80,000 for a house that is worth $100,000, your LTV is 80%.

  • ​​DTI is the percentage of your gross monthly income that goes toward paying housing and debts. It is one way that mortgage lenders measure a borrower's ability to manage monthly payments and repay debts.

  • ​​​When purchasing a home, it's important to know how much you can afford. With a pre-qualification, you'll determine in advance how much you may be able to borrow and the best mortgage options for you. This will help prepare for your future budget. Also, when making an offer, the seller will want to know that you are a serious buyer, and being pre-qualified shows that you are.

  • ​​Credit history is considered when applying for a mortgage loan. Your credit score, also known as a FICO® score, helps determine the types of home loans you can qualify for and affects your interest rate. To assess creditworthiness, lenders review your score to see how you've handled past credit obligations. This is a good indication of how you will handle them in the future. A higher credit score may help you qualify for a better interest rate and a lower down payment.

    By law, you are entitled to one free credit report per year. Visit annualcreditreport.com or contact any of the following credit reporting agencies:

  • ​​​There are a few key steps during the mortgage process. Understanding what happens during each step will help you prepare and will make the process go more smoothly.

    Pre-Qualif​​​ication

    It's important to know how much you can afford to borrow. Pre-qualification will help during your home search and seller negotiations.
    Start the Pre-Qualification Process >​

    Ap​​plic​ation

    Your M&T Mortgage Loan Officer will discuss financing options and help you complete a mortgage application when you're ready. After you've completed your application, your Loan Officer will provide you with a Loan Estimate outlining all costs associated with your loan and will submit your application for processing.

    Loan P​​​rocessing

    A Loan Processor obtains third-party information (for example, a property appraisal) that is required to complete the transaction. The Loan Processor prepares your file for a credit review and decision. The Loan Processor will then contact your Attorney or Settlement Agent to ensure that all parties are working toward the desire closing date.

    Credit Re​​view/Underwriting

    Your loan file will be reviewed and a credit decision made. If you are approved, the Loan Processor will send a written Mortgage Commitment that summarizes your mortgage loan and lists any conditions that must be met.

    Closing Disclosure

    Your Attorney or Settlement Agent reviews the loan file and provides M&T with the information required to prepare the Closing Disclosure, which you will receive approximately 3 to 7 business days before closing.  The Closing Disclosure confirms the details of your mortgage loan including the estimated funds needed for closing. It's important to review your settlement statement and ask any questions you may have prior to closing.​

    Loan Closi​​ng

    Depending on the state where your property is located, your Settlement Agent or attorney will confirm the scheduled closing date with you and review the funds needed to close. On the closing date, you will sign your paperwork and complete the loan closing.

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    • What happens if mortgage rates increase or decrease after I lock in a rate?
    • ​​If mortgage rates increase or decrease after you've locked in a rate, your locked rate will hold for the duration of your chosen lock period.​