Note: This applies to the State of New York (the NYC metro area), in the United States.
I'm shopping around for mortgage rates. I'm not sure if I have to get a preapproval mortgage to get their rates. I was told all the rates are basically the same, but I'm not sure if that's even true.
I want to check multiple lenders, but I'm worried that for each lender, there is a hard inquiry. A loan officer at Wells Fargo, if I understood him correctly, stated that getting a preapproval letter from another lender will result in an additional hard inquiry (he also said the letter would be valid for four months). In other words, what I want to make sure is that if I get a preapproval from X lenders, that those inquiries will only count as one hard inquiry in a specified amount of time.
So, my question is can I get multiple preapproval letters and have it count as one hard inquiry and what's the time frame for this? 30 days? 60 days?
Thank you very much.