6 Smart Ways to Raise Money for a Down Payment

How much money do you really need upfront to buy a home? Well, let’s see. Conforming loans require a minimum of 3 percent down. FHA requires 3.5 percent, and VA and USDA loans don’t require a dime. Once down payment is squared away, you have to factor in closing costs and money squirreled away in…

Real Talk About Mortgage Lenders and Home Loans

First-time buyers have one bomb resource on their side: lending options. Sure, you can walk into your local bank, apply for one loan product and call it a day. But unearthing the best deal requires a little more research and inquiry. Here’s how to find the best mortgage lender and loan for you. Mortgage Lenders:…

Killing It at a Home Auction

You could go the traditional route and purchase a home with the help of a real estate agent. But you’ve been hearing the buzz about real estate auctions and the bomb deals to be had. Sounds like a super-smart way for a first-time home buyer to save money, right? Before you hop online or head…

4 Ways to Stay Organized During the Home Buying Process

You have finally found your dream home, and your offer is accepted. Yessss! Now comes the fun part: the mind-boggling fog of escrow and financing. To start, you’ll have to keep track of a ton of paperwork: not only the offer, but counter-offers, addenda and updates. Then there is your mortgage paperwork, which can be…

How to Stay Laser Focused During the Final Walk-Through

Your offer is accepted, you’re approved for the loan, the appraisal and inspections are done, and finally, you sign off your paperwork. Yay! You’re done! Or are you? Before you take ownership of your new home, you’ll want to inspect it one last time with your real estate agent during the final walk-through. So, What…

The Right Home for You Right Now

You’re ready to buy. Props to you! Taking time now to narrow your focus (yes, we’re advising you to be completely selfish right now) will pay off big-time in the end. We’re talking about how to choose the right home. Location, Location, Location That old saying is still true. Where you choose to live will…

Rent vs. Buy: Are You Ready to Own Your First Home?

You have a little savings, solid income and a super-irritating landlord, so the time feels right to make your move. Buying a home will bump up your monthly housing costs, use up most of your cash and tie you down. Are you ready for all that? Here’s how to make the rent vs. buy decision….