Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

There are lots of things that you should and should not do after you apply for your mortgage so picking just a few to discuss here is no easy task. But it is safe to say that if you do anything that has anything to do with your credit or your work or the money you have planned for the down payment and closing costs, proceed cautiously and talk to your lender representative. I mean first, before you do anything, talk to your lender rep.

Spending the time and effort it takes to discuss potential mortgage approval land mines with your lender rep before you do anything, may head off unnecessary closing drama. Changing jobs, buying stuff and temporary loans to family may be okay, but just in case, play it safe, call and find out how best to proceed and what may be needed to document whatever it is you have planned.  That being said, you should not be constrained by your role as a mortgage applicant when an opportunity arises to improve your quality of life.


But first and foremost, don’t buy anything big, don’t lend any money, don’t borrow any money, don’t change jobs or do anything that could bang up your credit score without talking to your lender rep to see what the affect will be on your mortgage candidacy.

Just to be clear; talk to your lender rep, talk to your lender rep, talk to your lender rep, and consider that the Golden Rule.

Buying a house is an exciting event and it is easy to be swept up in the imagining of life in your new home. Painting, furnishing, landscaping and all sorts of home improvement thoughts add color to what the future will look like after move-in day. Advertisements for home improvement and furniture stores suddenly seem to be everywhere offering blockbuster, once-in-a-lifetime deals that you just can’t pass up.  Shopping for furniture bargains and opening up home improvement store credit cards before closing on your new home, might seem like great ideas to be ready for life as a brand new homeowner.  But not so fast.

Furniture can be expensive, so can big appliances like refrigerators and washers and dryers. Paying cash may reduce the assets you need for your down-payment, closing costs, escrows and reserves.  If you decide to use credit cards, you may end up increasing your monthly debt payments and you may no longer qualify for the mortgage you were pre-approved for to buy the house in the first place.  Your credit score might suffer because now you have a balance on a credit card or a credit inquiry from that home improvement store credit card that you just had to get.

Don’t buy big stuff until after you close.  It may be better to pay a little more because you missed the never-to-be-seen-again sales, then to have gotten great deals on furniture and appliances for a house you can’t move in to because you no longer qualify for the mortgage.