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Gather your Financial Documents
Create a dedicated file for all of your important financial documents. Include bank account statements (all pages, even the blank ones), financial statements, credit card information, investment documents, auto and student loan paperwork, pay stubs and tax returns for the past two years.
The self-employed will need all tax schedules included with their returns.
Check your Credit
Credit scores range between 400 and 800. Scores of 620 to 679 are classified as “good”. Scores that exceed 680 are considered “premium” and may possibly help get you a lower interest rate.
By law, Americans are entitled to a free copy of their credit reports from the “Big 3” credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian and Trans Union. You can order all three from annualcreditreport.com, the only supplier authorized by the U.S. government. You can also call them at 877-322-8228.
Savings and Debt
Start socking away as much money as possible to pay for your down payment and closing costs(escrow, appraisal, credit reports, title insurance, miscellaneous fees, escrow, etc.) and expenses such as inspections.
Then, set aside a bit more to help pay down your current debt.
Don’t Make any Changes
Avoid making any changes to your financial picture from the time you receive your loan pre-approval until you close on your new home. This means that you don’t switch jobs, move your money around or buy big-ticket items on credit.
Your lender will pull your credit reports one final time, just prior to closing. If there have been changes, the lender may delay or even postpone closing.