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There’s a good chance that your home will be the biggest purchase you make in your lifetime, which is why you’ll likely need a mortgage loan when it comes time to buy. And when it does, you surely want to work with a mortgage lender you can trust with this massive undertaking.

It’s your hard-earned money, after all, and finding the right lender can go a long way toward eliminating financial stress.

However, even the most trustworthy bankers and lenders may know a thing or two about the mortgage process that they aren’t telling you. Here’s what you need to know.

1. You don’t need a perfect credit score

It stands to reason that you will need a pretty decent credit score when it comes time to secure a mortgage at a good rate. It’s only fair, given how much cash your lender is forking over and the risk they’re taking on your behalf.

Still, that doesn’t mean you have to have a credit score of 800, which is aspirational for many people but not easy to attain. Rather, you can score a mortgage with a credit score of 680. And even if your score is as low as 620, there are special loans that can still help you secure the financing you need.

2. There’s no such thing as “no closing costs”

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, and that very much applies to so-called no closing cost mortgages. These are offered by bankers and mortgage lenders to get clients in the door, as folks might think they’ll save money this way.

The thing is, there’s a good chance a lender offering this kind of financing is jacking up your interest rates to help them recoup costs. But this might wind up costing you more in the end. You may as well opt for the traditional mortgage with a better interest rate.

3. You can make extra principal-only payments

Your mortgage lender might not clue you in on this, but you don’t have to strictly stick to the payment plan you set up for your loan. Before you get too excited, you can’t just miss a payment without consequences, so never do that.

You can, however, make extra payments over the course of your mortgage that you designate to pay principal only. You may even wind up paying your mortgage off faster just by adding one full principal-only payment per year.