Ready to start looking for your dream home? Here are a few general things to keep in mind as you prepare for your big move.
Do pay all your credit cards and any other debt on time before you even start considering a mortgage.
Do keep a positive balance in all of your checking and savings accounts with sufficient funds to close a loan.
Do keep your money right where it is. Changing banks or moving money will require explanation, which will just be more paperwork for you and your lender.
Do provide any documentation your loan originator asks for in a timely manner. It may seem like you are handing over quite a bit of information, keep in mind that you are asking the lender to trust you with hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Do factor in your lifestyle. A lender will give you a range that includes the top end of how much home you can afford. That number is based on your current expenses, not the future.
Don’t buy a vehicle. Even if you are paying cash.
Don’t quit your job.
Don’t take on any new debt (even if the salesperson offers you a 20% discount on your purchase).
Don’t make out-of-the-ordinary large deposits. If you must, be prepared to provide a clear paper trail detailing where the money came from and why.
Don’t buy big-ticket items on your credit cards. (We can’t stress this enough.)
Don’t omit or exaggerate information on you application! (SERIOUSLY!)
Don’t make sudden changes in your spending habits (unless it’s to save more) or with your income.