5 Tips to Ensure a Smooth Underwriting Submission Process

Your borrower found the perfect home. You’ve collected and prepared their paperwork. Now it’s time to secure that mortgage.

You both want a smooth process, so what can you do to ensure a quick and easy underwriting submission process, and one that is more likely to achieve a first-pass approval? After all, submitting a full and accurate file will not only make the process better for your borrower, it’ll save you time and money, too.

Below are some tips for loan officers, processors, and underwriters to help achieve that first-pass approval with minimal fuss.

1) Document your thought process and show your work

As you well know, every loan is unique. Demonstrating your thinking will make your underwriter’s job easier and faster, resulting in a quicker decision.

2) Follow prudent underwriting standards and all applicable guidelines — GSE, Lender, Investor and Mortgage Insurance (MI)

Your underwriter knows these standards and guidelines. Any deviations from them will be noticed and potentially prevent that first-pass approval.

3) Provide consistent information throughout the file 

Inconsistencies will be noticed, and will require further review. The quickest path to a first-pass approval is ensuring there are no questions that the underwriter will have to take more time to address.

4) Ask for additional information from your underwriter when needed

Guidelines only show minimum requirements and may lead to questions. With Enact, you can contact our ActionCenter® at 800 444.5664 or enactmi.com.

5) Document red flag concerns

If you don’t, your underwriter will. Documenting those concerns upfront will speed up your underwriter’s review.

5 Common Error Trends to Keep in Mind:

1) Income concerns, including:

  • Year-to-date earnings missing from paystubs
  • Verbal verification of employment missing from the file
  • Previous year’s income missing from the file

2) Asset concerns, including:

  • Primary residence conversion reserves not met
  • Insufficient funds for closing
  • Minimum borrower contribution not met
  • Large deposits without sources

3) Program related concerns, including:

  • Verification of taxes and insurance missing on other borrower’s other owned property
  • AUS submissions not updated with correct, current data
  • Seller contributions which are excessive or exceed actual closing costs

4) Documentation concerns, including:

  • Incomplete or expired income, credit or asset documentation

5) Appraisal concerns, including:

  • An “as is” appraisal with comments within the appraisal suggesting needed repairs
  • Comps used are outside of the subject property’s market, despite available comps within the market


You can find more tips like these in the Underwriting Tips section on our website.

Have additional tips for ensuring a smooth underwriting submission process? We’d love to hear them in the comments section!

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