I am in the market for my first property, specifically a residential MFR. I have a good grasp on the process for searching and analyzing deals (I will use the BP calculators) - but, I'm having a tough time establishing what my price range should be. Should I go and get pre-approved for a loan from a bank? Heard that can negatively affect a credit score if nothing is done with it right away.
I know this will be a "depends-on-your-situation" type answer, but any advice on how you've established a price range would be great! Just looking for a point in the right direction.
Hmm. I'm sure someone has more experience, but I'll try to answer.
Pre-approval requires a hard pull as far as I know. Hard pulls do ding your score (although probably not lots) and I'm a stickler about not getting pulled until absolutely necessary. If you call a mortgage originator they can probably give you a general 'price range' guess based on your DTI ratio. And, you'll establish a relationship so they are there for you when you find that property. They are not all the same, so it will give you chance to call a few and find a good fit for you.
I bought a home a few years ago and it took me so long I had to have another hard pull after approx 60 days if I recall. It didn't have a consequence as far as I could tell - same rate and amount. Be careful, though - sometimes people will try to tell you that a hard pull here or there doesn't matter much. That may be true, but I usually don't consent anyway. I can tell it disappoints, but it's my credit not theirs.
Getting a real pre-approval may have the unintended consequence of getting you to dive in faster. Or, not. Good luck with your investing.