Should you be pre-approved or pre-qualified?
There's a big difference between the two. Pre-approvals are general calculations done by the bank that give you a general understanding of the price of a house you can purchase. It is only a general number and does not include all the credit checks and backing documentation to ensure the financing will, in fact, be available.
Being pre-qualified by a mortgage broker gives you an exact number because it has included all the backup documentation to ensure that your financing will be in place at the time of purchase.
Therefore it is best to be pre-qualified before starting the purchase of a home.