When you apply for more a mortgage, working with two or more lenders at once can help you find the best deal. However, what you don’t want is to end up paying multiple fees for multiple applications. For example, if you get far enough into the process of a mortgage application, you will need to pay for an appraisal.
Using gifts for the down payment to satisfy the FHA underwriter is just a fancy way to create the famous zero money down home loan. In most cases you will be borrowing money for your down payment. Unless of course you are working with a loan officer that can help you get these funds from the seller.