What To Do If Your Mortgage Lender Ghosts You During the Approval Process

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It seems implausible that you would get far enough in the homebuying process to establish a conversation — perhaps even the outlines of a deal — with a lender, only to have them disappear on you without any sign or explanation. Alas, getting ghosted by lenders isn’t unheard of. 

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Why might a lender go dark on you? And what should you do about it? 

“A lender might ghost you if they find a problem with your loan application later on in the process,” said Adam Garcia, CEO of The Stock Dork

Or, they may simply have nothing urgent to say to you.  

“Another reason might be that they don’t have anything to update you about until the end of the underwriting process,” Garcia said. 

Recognize That You Are Not Crazy or Annoying — And That You Deserve Respect 

Whatever the reason is, being ghosted (or even just inconsistently communicated with) is not OK. And the first thing that prospective borrowers getting the silent treatment should do is remember that they’re the client and as such deserve respect. 

Save for Your Future

And no, you’re not being too demanding or “crazy” by expecting to be responded to within a reasonable time period. 

“In a nutshell, you are the client, and you hired the lender,” said Corey Tyner, a real estate investor and founder of Buy Yo Dirt. “Thus, you should expect them to respond to your queries and concerns. The lender is there to help you, not the other way around. You should never feel that you’re annoying your lender by requesting information about your mortgage application.”

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Have a Backup Contact 

“Having more than one contact channel to connect you with your lender will help you reach them when they become unresponsive,” said Joshua Blackburn, founder and director of design and construction at Evolving Home

Send in Additional Documentation

“For various reasons, lenders may be questioning your request and because of that, it could be stuck in limbo,” said Esther Lizmi, a loan underwriter with Cashfloat. “Sending in additional documentation, such as wage slips or bank statements, could push your loan request through to funding.”

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Contact Your Loan Officer 

“If your lender goes silent during the mortgage process, I recommend contacting your loan officer right away and gently demanding an explanation and more excellent communication in the future,” Tyner said. “If your loan officer is not responding to your concerns, call her or his supervisor.”

Make sure to email, too; this way you have a paper trail proving that you were attempting to get in touch to no avail. 

Try Texting 

“If it is a situation where an update is warranted, look for other means of contacting your lender such as texting the loan officer,” said Doug Perry, strategic financing advisor at Real Estate Bees

Once You Reach Someone, Have a Stern Conversation 

Once you reach the lender or their supervisor, ask to talk to the manager. A polite but stern conversation is in order. 

“A borrower should explain that multiple messages have been left without a response,” said Bill Gassett, the founder of Maximum Real Estate Exposure. “The manager needs to know that a lack of communication is unacceptable.”

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Demand Answers  

“The borrower should ask pointed questions such as if there is some kind of issue with the loan approval from happening,” Gassett said. “If the lender says there is some kind of problem the buyer should find out exactly what it is and the probability of the loan being completed.”

Save for Your Future

Demanding answers may feel harsh, but bear in mind that your money could be at risk so, Gassett underscores, it is critical that communication is stepped up.

Let Them Know Ghosting Is Unacceptable

“If there is no issue with the loan, the manager needs to know that ghosting is unacceptable,” Gassett said. “It should be made clear that communication is necessary even if there is little to update on the loan.”

Consider Switching Lenders 

“If the explanation or quality of customer service provided does not meet your expectations, you should consider canceling the loan and moving lenders,” Tyner said. “If you decide to switch lenders, we recommend contacting many lenders who know how to handle your specific circumstance. It’s crucial to browse different lenders since qualifying standards differ, and it’s also essential to locate a lender that will offer you the high quality of service you deserve.”

Read Reviews Before Choosing Another Lender

Getting ghosted likely isn’t your fault, but the more research you do on lenders, the more you can at least try to avoid this type of problem in the future. 

“Do your research,” Lizmi said. “Read customer reviews about potential lenders and see how people talk about their customer service.”

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About the Author

Nicole Spector is a writer, editor, and author based in Los Angeles by way of Brooklyn. Her work has appeared in Vogue, the Atlantic, Vice, and The New Yorker. She's a frequent contributor to NBC News and Publishers Weekly. Her 2013 debut novel, "Fifty Shades of Dorian Gray" received laudatory blurbs from the likes of Fred Armisen and Ken Kalfus, and was published in the US, UK, France, and Russia — though nobody knows whatever happened with the Russian edition! She has an affinity for Twitter.

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