So, you’ve been pre-approved for a home loan — congratulations! It’s an exciting step toward homeownership, but it’s crucial to tread carefully from here on out. As someone deeply entrenched in the mortgage industry for nearly two decades, I’ve seen my fair share of missteps that can derail even the most promising homebuying journey. Here are five things you should absolutely avoid after getting pre-approved, and why contacting your lender is paramount if any of these situations arise.

  1. Opening New Lines of Credit: One of the biggest mistakes you can make after getting pre-approved for a home loan is opening new lines of credit. This includes applying for credit cards, financing a new car, or taking out personal loans. Doing so can negatively impact your credit score and debt-to-income ratio, which are crucial factors in securing a mortgage. Even if that furniture store offers a tempting discount for opening a store card, hold off until after you’ve closed on your home.
  2. Transferring Money Between Accounts: While it may seem harmless, transferring large sums of money between bank accounts can raise red flags for lenders. They carefully scrutinize your financial history to ensure stability and consistency. Rapid or frequent transfers might suggest instability or even money laundering, which could jeopardize your loan approval. If you must move funds for a legitimate reason, always consult your lender first to avoid any complications.
  3. Depositing Large Amounts of Cash: Similar to transferring money between accounts, depositing large amounts of cash can raise concerns for lenders. While cash is king in many transactions, in the mortgage world, it can lead to headaches and delays. Lenders prefer to see a clear paper trail for your funds to verify their legitimacy. If you receive a windfall or have been saving in cash, speak with your lender about the best way to handle it without risking your loan approval.
  4. Changing Employment: Stability is key when it comes to securing a mortgage, and changing jobs can disrupt that stability. Lenders prefer to see consistent employment history, as it demonstrates your ability to repay the loan. While changing jobs isn’t always avoidable, it’s essential to communicate with your lender if it does happen. They can advise you on the best course of action and help mitigate any potential negative impacts on your loan approval.
  5. Ignoring Communication with Your Lender: Throughout the homebuying process, communication with your lender is vital. Whether it’s a change in financial circumstances, a question about the loan process, or simply providing requested documentation, staying in touch is key to a smooth transaction. If any of the aforementioned situations arise or if you have any concerns at all, don’t hesitate to reach out to your lender. As someone with extensive experience in the mortgage industry, I can attest that addressing issues proactively is far better than trying to fix them after the fact.

Remember, the journey to homeownership can be complex, but with the right guidance and precautions, it can also be incredibly rewarding. By avoiding these common pitfalls and maintaining open communication with your lender, you’ll be well on your way to closing on your dream home.

For more information or personalized guidance on your homebuying journey, feel free to reach out to me at jim@successgroupmortgage.com or visit www.successgroupmortgage.com. Your trusted partner in achieving homeownership success.

Jim Woodworth
NMLS #23463