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When you are pre-approved for an aircraft loan, the lender will provide a specific dollar limit they are willing to lend you based on your unique financial situation. With most pre-approved loans, you can lock in the rates for a specific period. For example, AOPA Aviation Finance lenders can lock in your rates for 30 to 60 days. Here are some factors to consider when determining whether a pre-approval makes sense for you.

Applying for a pre-approval helps you narrow your search.

Finding the right airplane for yourself can be overwhelming. When you apply for a loan in advance of finding that one, right airplane, you will have a financial dollar limit and a set plan for the type of aircraft. You’ll know exactly how much you are able to spend.

You’ll spend more time looking for that one airplane that’s exactly right for you.

Since the financing portion has been set already, you can maximize your time to search and research airplanes that fit your approval. It’s easy to get sidetracked in your search and waste time looking at airplanes that aren’t right for you. Use the new AOPA Aircraft Guide to see what aircraft is right for you.

You’ll avoid disappointment, frustration, and embarrassment.

You can avoid the broken heart of finding the right airplane only to find out you aren’t approved for that amount of money. Also, certain aircraft can require more stringent financing terms making the purchase impractical. To find out at the last minute is a huge disappointment—but what may be worse is the embarrassment of having told other pilots, family, and friends about the airplane you’re about to own when the deal can’t be made.

A pre-approved loan increases your negotiating power with the seller.

With a pre-approved loan, the seller has confidence that the sale won’t fall through at the last minute when the buyer isn’t approved. In fact, when there are multiple offers for the same airplane, the seller is way more likely to go with the buyer who has already been pre-approved because there should be no surprises down the road.

You’ll have a faster closing.

All the paperwork gathering, and application processing will be in the past so you will be able to move quickly ahead to the pre-buy inspection and the purchase.