Mortgage expert Tayo Oguntonade says making any sudden changes – like cancelling a credit card you don't often use – could damage your chances of getting a mortgage application approved. Applying for a mortgage is a minefield, and your credit score is a factor that you have some control over.
Tayo is a qualified mortgage advisor and the founder of Brickz with Tipz, a website that teaches people about property. He highlighted this common first-time buyer mistake and how to avoid it.
Mortgage application mistake first-time buyers often make
'A big mistake is making changes to your credit file during the application process,' says Tayo Oguntonade. 'You hear of many first-time buyers, they have done all they need to do to buy their first home, and then they take out card finance which ruins two years of good work, basically.
'When you get really close to buying your first home, when you've submitted your mortgage application, the best thing to do is just not tamper with your credit rating or your credit file whatsoever,' he explains.
'It's quite interesting because there are people who will do stuff with good intentions to prove their score. Right at the last minute, they might cancel a credit card that they're not using.
'But that can actually have a negative impact on your credit rating, especially if it's a credit card you've had for a long time,' Tayo says. This is because a credit card you've had for a while represents a long-lasting relationship with a credit card company.
Showing prompt repayments on credit cards is one of the many ways to improve your credit score for a mortgage. So cancelling the card can actually reduce your credit rating and damage your chances of getting accepted.
Buying a house is harder than ever for young people, so we need all the knowledge and tips we can get. People often shoot themselves in the foot by making sudden changes to their credit file, thinking it might help.
'The best thing to do, when you finally get there and you have submitted your application, just don't touch anything!' Tayo says. Spread the word.
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Millie Hurst was Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home from 2020-2022, and is now Section Editor at Homes & Gardens. Before stepping into the world of interiors, she worked as a Senior SEO Editor for News UK in both London and New York. You can usually find her looking up trending terms and finding real-life budget makeovers our readers love. Millie came up with the website's daily dupes article which gives readers ways to curate a stylish home for less.
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