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Buying Your First Home

Learn How to Apply

Mortgage: An Overview

Buying your first home is an important milestone in your life. At United, we take a personal approach to home financing—we’ll walk you through the entire process, and we’ll spend time working to understand your finances and long-term goals to match you with the loan product and term that makes the most sense for you. If you have questions at any point, call 1-800-914-8224 to connect with a local lender.
Ready to get started? Let’s begin with the basics.


What's a mortgage?
A mortgage is a type of loan that lets you borrow money from a lender to purchase or refinance a home. In exchange, you pay interest on what you borrow, and if you can’t repay the loan, the lender has the right to take the property.

couple meeting with Mortgage Lender

Why United for First-time Homebuyers?

A house will likely be the largest purchase of your life, and it will be where you’ll spend most of your time. We don’t take that lightly. When you have questions, our team is here to answer your call and walk you through every step of the process. We also have several products designed just for first-time homebuyers—including five 100% financing (no down payment) options and down payment assistance options.2
When you choose United for your first mortgage, you’ll benefit from:

  • Digital application 
  • Online mortgage payments
  • Large selection of mortgage products
  • United Signature Checking Account3
  • Employees committed to customer service
  •  .25% discount when you use auto-pay on certain loan products
  • Competitive rates and closing costs
  • Communication to keep you updated about your loan’s progress

Ready to get started?

Preparing to Apply for your Mortgage

couple figuring out their finances

Prepare Your Finances

To get the mortgage application started, you’ll need several documents prepared: two years of W2s, paystubs covering at least 30 days, two months of bank statements for all your accounts, and your government-issued I.D. Depending on your specific product, there will also be a minimum required credit score.

A member of our team will let you know how much you could qualify for and what your monthly payment would be with varying loan amounts. That way, you can make sure you’re comfortable with your potential house payment before you make an offer on a home.

family unpacking into their first home

United's Mortgage Interest Rates

So many factors go into your mortgage interest rate (credit score, employment, loan term, debt, etc.), and we want to make sure your rate matches your unique financial situation. That’s why we’ll spend time getting to know you and your long- and short-term goals before we create a customized rate quote for you.
We believe the first step toward superior customer service is setting realistic expectations. And that starts by quoting you a rate we know we can stand behind.5
Ready for your rate quote? Our team of expert mortgage lenders is ready to connect with you.

The Mortgage Application Process

Ready to apply for your first mortgage? It's easy to apply for a mortgage with United Community Bank. Once you have your finances ready, you'll need these items handy to get started!

Form W-2

You'll need to provide the past 2 years of W-2 forms.


You must provide paystubs from the past 30 days.

Government-Issued ID

Driver's License, State Issued ID, Military ID, or Passport

Bank Statements

You'll need to provide bank statements from the past 2 months.

Apply for a Mortgage Now

Begin your secure application.

Apply Now

Not quite ready to apply? Find a mortgage lender to connect with, visit a local branch, or give us a call at 1-800-914-8224.

Finances Prepared: What's Next?

steps to buying a home

Start your Home Search

We recommend starting the process by selecting your lender and understanding your home budget—the home search will be much simpler when you know exactly how much home you can afford.

Then you can choose your real estate agent and start searching for your dream home. Once you go under contract, you’ll submit a full mortgage application using all of the financial documentation you gathered (the property address is needed to complete the application). Once that happens, you’ll receive your loan disclosure documents – they outline the loan details and estimated costs.

If your loan application is approved, it heads to underwriting where it receives conditional approval. Basically, that means you’ve met most of the requirements to get your mortgage, but there are still documents our team needs before we can finalize the deal. Keep in mind that those forms aren't the final version and will likely be slightly adjusted once your closing attorney looks at them.
It typically takes 30-45 days to go from under contract to closed, with several required inspections in between. Partner with your lender and real estate agent to choose your closing date.

Welcome Home!

At Closing
  • Be prepared to sign lots of paperwork
  • Bring your ID
  • Your settlement agent (closing attorney) will let you know how to pay closing costs and the amount you need to bring to closing (if applicable)
After Closing

The home is officially yours—and it’s time to start making payments. If you prefer to make your first payment by check, you’ll find instructions to do that in your closing package. You’ll also receive an email two weeks prior to your first payment with instructions on how to pay online if you don’t have autopay set up already.


Congrats! Buying your first home is a huge accomplishment and one that deserves celebrating. Now that you’re a homeowner, your house payment is probably one of the highest bills you will pay each month. So imagine what life would be like if you could eliminate that monthly expense... Learn 4 strategies to pay off your mortgage faster. 

Need a little extra help? Connect with your local lender today!

Call 1-800-914-8224 to get started or fill out the form below.

Connect with a local lender.

Fill out the form below or call 1-800-914-8224 to get in contact with the Mortgage Services team. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Mortgage lenders like United take several factors into consideration, including your credit score, debt-to-income ratio, employment history, and assets. You can get a free copy of your credit report every 12 months from each of the three nationwide credit bureaus—Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion—by visiting
It will depend on a number of factors, including the interest rate, how much you have for a down payment, your current income, and your current debt.

The interest rate on a fixed-rate mortgage stays the same throughout the life of the loan. With a fixed-rate mortgage, you don’t have to worry about your rate going up and causing a bigger monthly payment than you’ve planned on.  
It's a letter from a mortgage lender like United that provides an estimate of the amount you pre-qualify for based on financial information you have provided so far. You can use the letter to show real estate agents and home sellers that you’re a serious homebuyer. It’s not a guarantee that your loan will be approved, but it indicates you’re well on your way.
Do your best to pay your bills on time and keep your credit card balances as low as you can. As you pay off credit cards, keep them open to show your good payment track record. If you’re in trouble with credit card debt, consider talking to a credit counselor.

Get seven more tips for improving your credit score.
Amortization, escrow, FICO score. Learning about the mortgage process can feel like learning a whole new language. We’ve put together this mortgage glossary to help with the translation. Bookmark it for quick reference and ask your mortgage lender as many questions as it takes to make homebuying decisions with confidence.

Didn't find what you are looking for? View All FAQs or Contact Us

Find Your Local Lender

Angie Abston

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 773860

Tammy Acker

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 324771

Bob Alman

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1178975

Jennifer Badger

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 473785

Susan Barkley

VP, Mortgage Originator

NMLS# 427473

Kevin Bennett

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 499232

Craig Bland

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1687090

Jason Blodgett

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 723213

Bailey Boshers

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1833461

Paula Buckles

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 546299

Renee Burgess

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 501421

Jeff Burgess

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 68803

Matt Burns

Mortgage Originator

NMLS# 789219

Russell Carmichael

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1492025

Ali Cook

AVP, Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1769112

Beth Cunningham

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 193234

Michael Dietz

UCMS Regional Sales Manager

NMLS# 853773

Eric Dunlap

CRA Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1244238

Cathy Edwards

CRA - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 557382

Dwight Fortenberry

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 723229

Kelvin Goodwin

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 516216

Sherry Griggers

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1562796

Brianna Grizzle

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1974720

Dan Hegeman

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1749909

Tabitha Helms

VP, Mortgage Originator

NMLS# 527461

Ryan Hulton

VP, Mortgage Originator/Regional Sales Manager

NMLS# 523081

Jennine Hunter

AVP - CRA Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1780411

Joy Hutsell-Banks

VP- Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 603159

Courtney Johnston

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1450800

David Jolly

AVP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 395787

Jenny Keenan

VP - UCMS Regional Sales Manager

NMLS# 916287

Betsy Kelly

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1451484

Adam Kirby

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 545555

Gwenn Lanning

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 643797

Steve Ledford

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1370117

Bobby Matthews, Jr.

VP - Regional Sales Manager

NMLS# 472433

Kitty Mauzy

AVP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 512515

Kathy McClure

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 486300

Lauri McCray

SVP - Director of Mortgage Operations

Blake McPherson

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1535320

Matt Meissner

Mortgage Area Sales Manager

NMLS# 262525

Lisa Mericle

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 527465

Jose Moreno

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 561490

Nick Morrone

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1795139

Scott Nation

VP, Mortgage Originator/Regional Sales Manager

NMLS# 546490

Kara Nungesser

AVP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1714906

Patti Peterson

VP, Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 759440

Jamie Pimentel

VP - UCMS Mortgage Area Sales Manager

NMLS# 281439

Lisa Pittman

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 767051

Bart Poynor

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 188427

Fiorella Rastelli

CRA Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 2444165

Mikell Richards

VP, Mortgage Originator/Regional Sales Manager

NMLS# 607894

Donna Robertson

AVP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1715410

Anna Robison

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 171224

Doug Schoonmaker

VP - UCMS Mortgage Area Sales Manager

NMLS# 659126

Paul Secondi

AVP, Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 55233

Bryan Segers

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1715257

Roseanne Smith

VP, Mortgage Originator

NMLS# 464057

Ryan Smith

VP, Mortgage Originator

NMLS# 112493

Erica Smith

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 2316979

Marie Spafford

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 532523

Cindy Stone

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 1216150

Carolyn Swanner

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 643804

Ginny B. Terry

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 686745

David Turner

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 546621

Susan Visi

Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 792258

Kim Witte

VP - Mortgage Loan Originator

NMLS# 455507

Woody Woodfin

SVP, Regional Sales Manager

NMLS# 457100

  1. Not all borrowers will qualify. This is not a commitment to lend. Benefits listed may not apply to every borrower.
    2Private mortgage insurance may be required for financing above 80% loan to value. 
    3Avoid monthly service charge on United Signature Checking account by maintaining $15,000 minimum daily balance. You may also avoid the monthly service charge if you maintain $25,000 in combined consumer deposit balance(s) or maintain $50,000 in combined outstanding principal balances in consumer loan accounts owned and serviced by United Community Bank. Additionally, the monthly service charge may be avoided if the primary account holder for this account also maintains assets under management with United Community Advisory Services, or maintains a mortgage loan serviced by United Community Mortgage Services or our mortgage servicing provider on behalf of United. (Note: United Signature Checking, advisory services and third party serviced loans must all be reporting under the same tax identification number in order to qualify for service charge waiver.)
    4Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) loans are variable rate loans; interest rates and payments may increase after consummation. After the initial fixed-rate period, your interest rate can increase or decrease every six months according to the market index. Any change may significantly impact your monthly payment.5Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) loans are variable rate loans; interest rates and payments may increase after consummation. After the initial fixed-rate period, your interest rate can increase or decrease every six months according to the market index. Any change may significantly impact your monthly payment.
    5Rates offered are good only at the time offered. Mortgage interest rate is not guaranteed until rate is locked and then is guaranteed only for set lock period. Property address is required to lock rate.
    © 2023 United Community Bank | NMLS# 421841 | | United Community Mortgage Services is the mortgage lending division of United Community Bank. We are an approved seller/servicer for the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac). Normal credit criteria apply.  This is not a commitment to lend.  Offer subject to change without notice.

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