Basically a GFE (Good Faith Estimate) is a summary of all costs associated with the purchase and financing of a 1-4 family residential owner occupied property.
A good faith estimate must be provided by a mortgage lender or broker in the United States to a customer, as required by the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act ( RESPA). The estimate must include an itemized list of fees and costs associated with your loan and must be provided within three business days of applying for a loan.These mortgage fees, also called settlement costs or closing costs, cover every expense associated with a home loan, including inspections, title insurance, taxes and other charges as determined by your state, region and circumstances.
The GFE is a standard form which is intended to be used to compare different offers (or quotes) from different lenders or brokers so that you can compare the costs and rates and esentiallyt have an “apples to apples” comparison. The good faith estimate is however, only an estimate. The final closing costs may be different ‘ sometimes very different based on changes to your loan parameters and other issues that the loan officer may not know about when you first start the process. It should be revised as the transaction moves forward and changes are negotiagted or discovered.
See the following HUD site for items normally on the GFE.