Buying a Home: the Missing Manual

Buying a Home: the Missing Manual by Nancy Conner
$21.99 from O’Reilly Media ($17.99 ebook, $9.99 Kindle)

Buying a home is the largest financial decision that most of us will ever make; as such, it makes sense to read through an instruction manual before you get started!

As someone who’s never owned a home, but would like to, ┬áit was interesting – and a bit overwhelming – to see all of the factors that need to be considered before you make an offer.

The book is divided into four sections. Section 1, preparing for home ownership, helps you to decide whether or not owning a home is right for you, as well as calculate how much home you can afford. I found the first part of this section to be somewhat dull, but things picked up quickly after that.

Section two discusses finding the home that’s best for you. After years of renting, I’ve already started compiling a mental list of what I want and don’t want in the house I finally buy, which is one of the first recommendations the book makes (although of course they say you should actually write it down!) This section also talks about different styles of homes (there’s a lot of terminology I didn’t know), explains the jobs of all the people that you’ll have to deal with (real estate agents, loan officers, etc) and provides some resources for finding your new home.

Section three is about paying for the home: financing the down payment, coming up with creative financing solutions (although I don’t think the suggested garage sale is going to get you all that far!), applying for a mortgage, and figuring out closing costs.

Section four is negotiating and closing the deal. Now that you’ve found the home you want, how do you get it for the least amount of money, and what do you need to watch out for? When it is too late to walk away? This section also covers important things you need to have taken care of before closing, such as arranging for a professional home inspection.

It’s hard to make dry legal matters exciting, but this book does a good job of laying out the information you need to know before buying a home. I’ll be keeping it handy in the hopes that I soon find myself in that position!

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This entry was posted by William on Wednesday, November 10th, 2010 at 3:05 pm and is filed under Other / Misc . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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