They say your home is the biggest investment you’ll ever make. At the heart of that investment, though, is your mortgage. What seems like a simple concept at face value—a loan granted for buying property—is actually much more complicated. That’s why you’ll hear experts in finance and real estate alike offering their mortgage advice (solicited or not) to first-time home buyers—and anyone who will listen. That can lead to many conflicting takes and a lot of confusion. However there are five basics most, if not all, real estate agent and mortgage brokers agree that you must do to ensure you get to move in to your home. First, don't make any major purchases or change jobs while in the mortgage process. Major life changes, such as a new job or big purchase can put your mortgage in jeopardy. Many believe having a loan commitment letter guarantees a mortgage. However if there are changes from when that letter was issued to when you actually apply for the loan, you could find yourself with a loan denial letter instead. If you have less-than-perfect credit, find a good mortgage broker, not a bank. Banks usually only offer conventional mortgages, while mortgage brokers have access to a variety of loan products for people with all kinds of financial histories. The appraisal is a very important part of the loan process. So make sure your agent is present when the lender’s appraiser comes to do the appraisal to show the appraiser the special details of the house. Plus a good real estate agent will have a set of recent comparable sales, or comps, to prove the home’s value. Don’t start house-hunting without a mortgage pre-approval letter. If you don't have a letter from a lender stating the type and amount of loan they can qualify for, you aren’t prepared to purchase a home. Finally when it comes to applying for a mortgage, don't quit. The loan application process is complicated, and people often become overwhelmed while gathering all the documents they’re asked for and get frustrated and decide to give it a rest for a few days. There are critical dates on purchase contracts that must be met, so any delay can jeopardize your purchase.