Whenever a new buyer says they have to ” See how much they can afford” I try to correct them. It should not be how much the bank tells you you can afford, it SHOULD be how much you feel comfortable paying. If your rent is $1200/mo. , and the bank says you can afford $1800, what would you feel more comfortable paying? The most important thing to remember is that the mortgage does not start until that first payment, gathering your W2′s and paystubs is the easy part.
When purchasing a home the initial step is typically getting pre-approved by a mortgage loan officer. What I try to stress to my buyers (especially the first timers) is that this approval is far from a guarantee. What I would like to touch on is one of the most popular mistakes made by those in the hunt for a mortgage:
DON’T BUY ANYTHING!!
Any auto loans, credit cards, personal loans, ect count against you and can only negatively effect both your credit score and debt ratio. Wait until after you move into your home to buy appliances or furniture. I can not emphasize this enough to buyers awaiting on a final mortgage approval. It is understandable if an emergency arises, but just remember it is best to just hold off on any other big purchases or credit uses until after your mortgage closes.