You might think that once you’ve found your dream home, pre-qualified for a loan and had the inspection that you’re home free—just a few more days, and that new home is yours!
Sadly, a home purchase is never truly done until those keys are in your hand, and if you’re not careful in the days and weeks leading up to your closing, you could actually put your sale in jeopardy—or lose the home altogether.
Want to make sure your home purchase goes smoothly every step of the way? Here are five things you’ll want to avoid:
1. Big-ticket Purchases
You were approved for your loan based on your credit score and current financial situation. Big-ticket purchases (like cars, furniture or appliances) change that financial situation. They deplete your funds and make you appear less fiscally responsible—both things that can force a lender to rethink your application.
2. New Lines of Credit
Along the same lines, your credit score needs to remain stable during the closing process. Opening new lines of credit (like getting a car loan or a new credit card) can make your FICO score drop and send up a red flag to your lender. Avoid doing this at all costs!
3. Employment Changes
You need to have stable employment in order to make a good investment for your lender. Losing your job, switching jobs, or just up and quitting can all impact your viability as a borrower, so be on your best behavior and wait to make big employment changes until you’re in your new home.
4. Late Payments
Make sure you’re keeping up with all your loan, credit card and debt payments during the closing process because any late payments can seriously mess up your credit score—and your chances of getting that home. If you’re overwhelmed with to-dos, take a few minutes to set up auto payments through your bank account. You’ll be glad you did!
5. Incorrect or Missing Documents
Errors on documents always cause delays in closing, but missing ones can stop it altogether. Make sure to quickly respond to any requests for additional documentation, and give your lender all the paperwork they need to keep the ball rolling at all times.
There are a lot of moving parts when you’re buying a home, so get organized, stay on track and avoid these five faux pas, and you’ll be walking over that threshold in no time.
About the Author
Mark Watson is a loan officer and vice president of sales at Guardian Mortgage Company’s Plano location. He has more than 12 years of experience in the mortgage industry, spending time as both a loan officer and a loan processor. He has been with Guardian Mortgage since 2008.