Majority of lenders say loan process takes longer to complete

A new survey indicates that the time it takes to buy a house has increased.

According to the website LendingTree, 64 percent of lenders surveyed said the time it takes for prospective homeowners to go through the process has become longer. Refinancing has also become more drawn out, as loans take an average of 45 days to close, while the time it takes to process a new mortgage isn't quite as lengthy.

"Obtaining a home loan can be an overwhelming process," said Doug Lebda, founder and CEO of LendingTree. "Although lenders are flooded with volume, borrowers who come to the table prepared will increase lender efficiency and will allow for a shorter closing timeframe."

To help expedite the process, lenders recommend bringing federal tax returns from the past two years, pay stubs for proof of income, statements that detail any outstanding payments and an updated credit report.

It may also be a good idea for consumers to review their financial statements before meeting with lenders, as any discrepancies found may impact their credit scores.