What is a Good Faith Estimate? What is a GFE?

Answer:

A Good Faith Estimate, also called a GFE, is a form that lists basic information about the terms of a mortgage loan for which you've applied. If you applied for a mortgage before October 3, 2015, or if you are applying for a reverse mortgage, you will receive a GFE.

The GFE includes the estimated costs for the mortgage loan. The Good Faith Estimate provides you with basic information about the loan, which helps you:

  • Compare offers
  • Understand the real cost of the loan
  • Make an informed decision about choosing a loan

The lender must provide you with a GFE within three business days of receiving your application or other required information. You can be charged a credit report fee before receiving a GFE.  But, you can't be charged any other fees until you get the GFE and indicate that you want to proceed with the mortgage loan.

Tip

You don't have to take the mortgage loan just because you receive a GFE. You can shop around and get multiple GFEs before choosing a loan or a lender.

Note

If you applied for a mortgage on or after October 3, 2015, you will receive a new form, called the Loan Estimate, instead of a GFE for most kinds of mortgage loans. If you are applying for a HELOC, a manufactured housing loan that is not secured by real estate, or a loan through certain types of homebuyer assistance programs, you will not receive a GFE or a Loan Estimate, but you should receive a Truth-in-Lending disclosure

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