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Tips for Buying a House

black and white keys reflecting decision: should I buy a house?

Should I Buy a House? 9 Keys to Confidence: A MoneyTips Guide

Knowing when to buy a house comes down to two key things: how bad you want it and how financially prepared you are to pay for it. Here’s a common scenario: Your heart says, “Go on, make the dream real!” But your head demands proof that you’re not about to blow up your budget. It’s...

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How To Buy a House Out of State

Moving into a new home can be a big deal, even when you’re just moving to a new neighborhood or a nearby county. When the move crosses state lines, buying a home in the area can feel like exploring another planet, especially if it’s somewhere you haven’t lived before. The good news is that you’re...

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happy lady with keys in her hand having followed a home buying checklist

Home Buying Checklist: From Rookie to Pro

You’ve hit the big leagues now. Batter, batter, you are up! But before you start sweating under the stadium lights, call a TIMEOUT. You’ll want to read this handy little home buying checklist before you take a swing. Buying a home is exciting, but it takes some prep to pull off. Don’t dive into a...

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happy couple and realtor (parties involved in getting a house)

What Parties Are Involved When Getting a House?

Buying a new home is exciting, but it can also be a complicated process. If you’ve never owned a home before, you may be confused about who’s involved. As you’ll quickly find out, there are many more people involved besides the buyer, the seller and the real estate agent. And once you factor in the...

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Gray construction paper house

Things You Should Know Before Purchasing a Deed-Restricted House

Just like laws vary by country and state, certain houses can be subject to specific rules that owners must abide by. Broadly speaking, a deed restriction is a limitation on what you can do with your property. Some common examples of deed restrictions include prohibiting the use of your home for conducting business activities or...

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Modern staircase in a new home

How To Buy a New Construction Home

There’s something special about buying something custom-made for you and a home is no exception. A new construction house gives you the freedom to design your own home to your particular specifications. Just don’t forget that new construction homes come at a premium and that you’ll have to endure a lot of planning and waiting....

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Colorful desktop computer mouses

Desktop Appraisals: Everything You Need To Know

One of the most important components of the home buying or selling process is getting the home appraised. In fact, many lenders will require an appraisal before a deal can be closed. With an appraisal, an unbiased third party will have the opportunity to take a close look at the home and determine a fair...

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Rows of orange and pink houses

PUD (Planned Unit Development): What It Is and How It Differs From Other Types of Housing

If you’re shopping for a home, you may already know the differences between single-family homes, townhouses, condominiums and maybe even cooperatives. But you may have paused when you encountered a different kind of real estate known as a planned unit development (PUD). In this article, we’ll explain what a PUD is and its purpose. We’ll...

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Green fly swatter on a pink background

Pest Inspection: What It Covers and Why You Should Get One

Did you know that termites don’t sleep? Or that a bedbug infestation can linger even after all your belongings are removed from the home? When you’re in the throes of buying a home, the last things you want to think about are the creepy crawlies that could be just out of sight. Many home buyers...

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Broken heart-shaped cookie

How To Buy a House After a Divorce

Getting divorced can be a challenging process. Even when the split with your spouse is completely amicable, divorce represents a new chapter in your life that – from a financial, social and emotional perspective – can be difficult to prepare for. One of the hardest questions to answer following a divorce is, “Who gets to...

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Red pins on white geometric map

A Guide to Investing in an Opportunity Zone

There’s a common misconception that investing and helping others are mutually exclusive goals. But you can make a potentially profitable investment while contributing to positive change by investing in opportunity zones. Opportunity zones are an economic development tool that offers a potential win-win scenario to investors who can qualify for tax benefits while helping under-invested...

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Man smiling while using mobile phone

The Best Apps for Buying a Home in 2022

Whether you’re looking to buy a house, rent an apartment or invest in commercial property, the best way to peruse the market is through a real estate app. Thanks to technology, house hunting is now literally at your fingertips, and it’s easier than ever to buy a house online. All that’s standing between you and...

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Tax Benefits of Opportunity Zone Investment

As part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the federal government designated some underserved communities as “qualified opportunity zones.” The aim of opportunity zones is to provide benefits to these communities by giving real estate investors tax incentives that encourage community development. But what exactly are the tax benefits of investing in...

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Sale tags

Short Sale vs. Foreclosure: What’s the Difference?

It can feel impossible to buy a house in today’s hypercompetitive, low-supply housing market. Fortunately, searching for homes listed on the market isn’t the only way to buy a home. Enter short sales and foreclosures. These home buying options present additional opportunities beyond what’s on the market. Short sales and foreclosures offer buyers access to...

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Field of yellow flowers

What It Means To Buy Landlocked Property

You’ve been shopping for vacant land and found a parcel you love – but there’s one problem. The property is landlocked.  Landlocked property doesn’t have direct access to a public road and is only accessible by crossing another property. While landlocked real estate can be an exciting investment opportunity, it may involve legal risks because...

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Hand in a refusal motion

What Is the Right of First Refusal in Real Estate?

You know how the story begins: You’ve found your dream home. But, plot twist: It’s not even on the market yet! But you love the home, and you’re a highly motivated buyer, so you decide you want to be first in line to buy your dream home if the owner ever decides to sell. To...

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Two people looking out a window

How To Finance Multiple Rental Properties

Owning multiple rental properties can be a lucrative way to build wealth over the long term, but, unfortunately, financing rental properties isn’t always as simple as applying and getting approved for a mortgage. If you plan on building a real estate portfolio, it’s important to know what potential financing challenges and hurdles you might face....

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Pie charts

What Is the 70% Rule in House Flipping?

Home improvement shows make flipping houses look so simple, don’t they? You buy a cheap home, slap some fresh paint on the walls, and then you turn around and sell it for a huge profit, right?  While house flipping may occasionally work this way – let’s not make the exception the rule. The reality is...

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Paper bag with money

How Much Over the Asking Price Should I Offer?

Does the current seller’s market make you feel like you need to take a stealth approach to negotiations? When there are lots of buyers interested in a home, you may find yourself on the frontline of a bidding war. Sometimes buyers try to offer more than the seller’s asking price to give them the best...

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Two people looking at a contract

How To Negotiate House Prices Effectively in 2022

If you’ve been looking around for the perfect house, you may feel anxious about how to buy the one you’ve set your heart on at a price that won’t bust your budget.  We know negotiating a home price may seem intimidating, but knowing the right moves to make ahead of time can relieve a lot...

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Three people looking at a folder smiling.

17 Questions To Ask When Buying a House

Buying a home is an exciting step to take – especially if it’s your first home. It’s a milestone many of us hope for. Whether you’re an aspiring home buyer or a seasoned home buyer, there’s always something to learn about buying a home.   From deciding what type of mortgage you want to deciding if...

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Finger pointing

How To Ask for Reasonable Requests After Home Inspections

The all-important home inspection can be as revealing as expertly peering into a crystal ball, especially if it turns out the home needs repairs you didn’t foresee when you first toured it. If you’re a first-time home buyer, you may not even know what to ask for after a home inspection report comes back recommending...

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Two people arm wrestling

What To Do When a Seller Won’t Negotiate After an Inspection

So, you’ve found your dream home and submitted an offer. Now you’re moving to the next phase, the home inspection. The home inspector discovers some problems that require repairs. You ask the seller to fix some of those problems, but they refuse to negotiate. This can be an awkward and, oftentimes, common situation that may...

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Home with For Sale By Owner Sign

The House-Hunting Checklist To Get You Started

When you’re house hunting, it’s easy to fall in love with a home that feels like a good fit. But finding your dream home should go beyond the feeling a house gives you. Whether you’re a first-time buyer or an experienced homeowner, you need to ask the right questions about every home you consider and...

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Two people unpacking moving boxes

Home Co-Ownership: Should You Try It for Your First Home?

So you want to buy your first home, but buying a home on your own feels next to impossible. If you want out of the rent game but aren’t quite ready to tackle homeownership by yourself, co-ownership is a viable option. Living your best financial life looks different for everyone. And, for some, it can...

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A blue front door with plants in front of it.

What To Know About Buying a House As-Is

A charming house has caught your eye, and it’s landed at the top of your dream-home wish list. Whether it’s the features, the retro facade or the low purchase price, you love it. In fact, you love it as-is. But love can be blinding. There are a few things you’ll want to take into consideration...

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Small home with front porch

Inherited Property: How To Refinance To Buy Out Heirs

When you inherit a home or other property, you have a lot of decisions to make. Maybe you’re thinking about moving in, selling the property or converting the home into an investment property. It’s important to remember that when you inherit a home, you inherit the home’s value and any debts or legal claims connected...

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Young man sitting on couch with headphones on with his laptop on his lap and looking at his phone

First-Time Home Buyer Programs

Adulting ain’t easy, we know. One of the more challenging adulthood milestones to reach is buying your first house. And one of the most challenging parts of buying your first house is saving up for the down payment.  Inflation plus stagnant minimum wages equals a generation that makes less money and has fewer opportunities to...

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Two people and cat working in home office

Tips To Get a Mortgage if You’re Self-Employed

Buying a home can feel exciting. And, no matter who you are, getting a mortgage can feel stressful – especially when you’re self-employed.  Mortgage lenders examine your personal financial history and your business’s financial history as well. But you’re not alone.  As of July 2021, you and over 16 million people in the U.S. are...

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magnifying glasses for topic home inspections checklist and costs

Home Inspection Checklist and Costs

Don’t let your dream home become a nightmare. Before you seal the deal on your home purchase, do yourself a favor and get a home inspection done. It’s one of the best ways to avoid moving into a house that will require unexpected expensive repairs. What Is a Home Inspection? A home inspection – which...

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happy couple shaking hand with realtor who has blue folder

4 Pros and Cons of Buying a House

Before forging ahead with your house hunt, it’s important to weigh the advantages of buying a house against (sorry to say it) the disadvantages. Homeownership should bring a little zen to your life, which is why creating a pros and cons list for buying a house is so important. It’s also personal: One person’s pro...

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Father and child playing with cardboard boxes

Using Delayed Financing To Buy A Home

Learn how delayed financing can help potential homebuyers compete with other buyers who can pay cash to get their dream homes.

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