You’ve gotten pre-approved for a mortgage and are working with a real estate agent; you are officially a home buyer! This is a fun and exciting time in your life, and it can become very stressful if you let it. Buyers sabotage their dream of becoming a homeowner all the time, so here’s a list of what NOT to do if you want to live happily ever after.
Mistake # 1: STAY pre-approved
So many buyers get pre-approved for their mortgage and assume that it’s good forever. Not all lenders and real estate agents will take the time to explain the complexities that involve getting pre-approved, and therefore do not educate their client about how to STAY pre-approved. Your job, income, debt-to-income ratio, and credit score are all verified in order to determine if you can get a mortgage, and for how much you can borrow. This will be verified numerous times throughout the process, and up to the day you close on a home, so it cannot change! This means:
- NO new lines of credit can be opened.
- NO more credit card usage.
- NO late payments.
And please, for the love of all that’s holy in the world, do NOT go buy a new car or new furniture & appliances for the house you haven’t even bought yet. Wait until you close, and then you can put yourself into as much debt as you want. After all, it is the American way, right?
Mistake # 2: Dilly-Dallying & Delaying
You look online every day at homes, and your agent emails you with new listings that match your exact search criteria. When a home first hits the market, it’s like a shark tank and tons of agents and their buyers are circling it like it’s dinner. If you want to see a house, then you need to jump on it. I know you’re busy with work, or your kid’s baseball practice, or you need to go grocery