6 financial mistakes people make when applying for a mortgage

Ginger Dean

July 21, 2014

By: Ginger Dean, Home Finance Specialist

In: Finance and Legal

Buying a home is a big decision; that's why it's a smart move to have as much information with you as possible when you go to the bank and apply for a mortgage. Having your entire financial life flashed right before your eyes can be an overwhelming experience, especially if you're not prepared for it. Buying a home is a big financial commitment, so before you sign on the dotted line use these tips to make sure you know what you're getting into.

Make sure to get a pre-approval from your bank. Before you start looking for a new home, it's a good idea to go to your bank and get a mortgage pre-approval. This will give you an idea of the price range you can afford to buy in, which in turn gives you a starting point to start shopping for your dream home.

Don't let your emotions get the best of you. When you start shopping for a home, try not to let your emotions be a factor in your financial decision. The best advice for homebuyers is to shop around and think about your purchase. This will help you avoid overpaying for a home that you may not be happy with after you move in - and may not be able to afford.

Don't overspend because you probably can't afford it. The bigger the mortgage, the bigger the monthly payment. If you fall in love with a home and it's out of your price range you have two options: you can move on and look for a smaller home or you can negotiate the purchase price. Whatever you do, don't break your budget when buying a home. If you don't even think of it as an option, it'll be easier to stick to your plan.

Don't compromise on the location. Your home is where you will be living for the next several years of your life so why should you compromise on the location? The truth is that you shouldn't. You can change whole rooms in the home you buy, but you can't change where it is.

Make sure to get a real estate agent. Buying a home is a complicated transaction. A real estate agent will let you know how fair the price is compared to other homes in the area and they can also negotiate the purchase price on your behalf.

Don't apply for more credit than you need. When you finally find your home and visit your bank for your actual mortgage approval, be clear about your needs. Your bank may offer you other products such as lines of credit or credit cards, but don't give in. Accepting more credit than you need can only lead to financial troubles if you get tempted to spend.

Buying a home will be one of the largest commitments you make. Every decision you make during this time can either make or break the final outcome of your purchase, so spend and choose wisely.


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