Personal Resources

USC Credit Union has proudly served the Trojan family since 1973.

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What is the difference between being ‘pre-qualified’ and ‘pre-approved’ for a loan?

Pre-qualification is an informal way to see how much you may be able to borrow. You can be “pre-qualified” over the phone with no paperwork by telling a lender your income, your long-term debts, and how large a down payment you can afford. Without any obligation, this helps you arrive at a ballpark figure of the amount you may have available to spend on a house.

Pre-approval is a lender’s actual commitment to lend to you and carries much more weight with sellers than being pre-qualified. Being pre-approved involves assembling the financial records (without the property description and sales contract) and going through a preliminary approval process. Pre-approval gives you a definite idea of what you can afford and shows sellers that you are serious about buying, putting you in a favorable negotiating position.