Check the charts on your GFE

Hand holding pen and signing mortgage

Within three days of applying for a home loan, you'll get a Good Faith Estimate that lays out all of the terms and fees for the mortgage you want.

But are you getting the best possible deal?

The standardized GFE that the government now requires lenders to use can help you decide.

On the last of the three pages, you'll find two comparison charts that weren't on the old GFEs created by banks and mortgage companies.

The first is called the "tradeoff table" and shows what your monthly payments and closing costs might be for slightly different mortgages from the same lender.

The first option shows what you'd pay with lower settlement charges, which is great if you're short on cash, but with a slightly higher interest rate and monthly payment.

The second option is for a home loan with a lower interest rate and lower monthly mortgage payments but higher settlement charges.

The "shopping chart" allows you to compare similar loans from different lenders, including the interest rate, monthly payments and closing costs.

You can see even more comparisons like that by searching our extensive database of mortgage rates available in your area.

Even if you've already applied for a mortgage, it's not too late to put the approval process on hold and pursue a better deal.

Here are more 8 critical questions your GFE should answer about your loan.

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