Dayia Shurtleff, marketing assistant, Lewiston State Bank

Are you thinking about buying or building a new home in the near or distant future? Are you looking to refinance your current place? If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, read on! The most seasoned mortgage and construction loan officers at Lewiston State Bank offered this list of seven things to avoid when buying, refinancing or building a home.

  1. Shopping for big purchases with new credit. That new credit card might be attractive and no one wants to turn down a new set of wheels, but any credit inquiry can reduce your credit score, which is viewed negatively by lenders. So try to hold off until your loan is completely finalized before you do any card or car shopping.
  2. Taking on new debt. Any new debt you take on could reduce the amount you are eligible to borrow. You wouldn’t want the payments for your new living room set to prevent you from building the house of your dreams.
  3. Making changes to your down-payment funds and sources. While a seemingly simple transaction between accounts might not seem like a big deal to you, lenders will need a paper trail to verify that you have owned the funds for a certain time-frame. So it is best to be safe rather than sorry and keep the payment in one account until it is paid.
  4. Losing track of records for stock liquidation. Speaking of paper trails, try to keep one for your stock liquidations used for your down payment so you are able to pass that information along to your lender. Any change could force the loan to be underwritten again. This can delay the process further and could potentially risk losing your rate.
  5. Quitting or changing jobs. New positions are always exciting, but keep in mind that lenders call your employer to verify you work there. If you have quit or changed jobs, the loan process will be delayed or stopped. Your credit eligibility may also be impacted for several months if you have a drastic career change, like moving to a different industry. Try to keep your lenders in the loop with all job changes.
  6. Being late on any of your current loans or credit cards. Keeping on top of payments for your current debt is always important, but it is critical when you are applying for a new loan. Missing a payment deadline could jeopardize your ability to qualify, so be sure to be current on the payments on your debts.
  7. Forgetting to tell your loan agent about any changes to the transaction. Last minute alterations, such as seller credits or termite work, can affect the closing dates. Loan officers work to help your process go as smooth as possible, the more they know about you and your situation, the smoother the process will go.