Any Tips On Buying A House?

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  #26  
Old 01-20-2013, 10:34 AM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Agreed goddess, my next door neighbor is on that list... He was 18 and she was 16... Kind of a crappy deal
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  #27  
Old 02-26-2013, 06:08 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by annacgunter View Post
Agreed goddess, my next door neighbor is on that list... He was 18 and she was 16... Kind of a crappy deal
Agreed. I have a friend of the family in the same situation. Arrested and labeled a sexual predator because he had a gay boyfriend and his boyfriend's dad was not happy his son was gay.He is now in the same criminal category as those who rape small children. Also just because an offender does not live there does not mean one will not move in or already lives there and has not been arrested.

Neighbors come and go. We had lovely neighbors. They moved and now we have the noisiest nut cases. Barking dogs, shooting guns, and running power tools 24/7.

I
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  #28  
Old 02-26-2013, 06:58 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Make sure you have enough for closing cost, deposit for ESCRO, Inspection, and pest control.

We were fortunate enough to have our seller pay the 3.5k closing cost so we only had to foot about 2k out of pocket to buy our house.

We also shopped around at different banks to find the best interest rate. We ended up going with our own bank anyways at a 3.5% interest rate and we went with the option to have our taxes and insurances bundled in with our payments.

For our 155k house we were going to pay $632 a month but adding in the taxes/insurance we pay $955 a month.

Also make sure you get FIXED interest rate. I can't stress that enough. Our house recently had it's value increased to 186k and I've heard of people having to pay more on their house when prices fluctuate like that.
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  #29  
Old 02-26-2013, 08:42 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bindilee
Make sure you have enough for closing cost, deposit for ESCRO, Inspection, and pest control.

We were fortunate enough to have our seller pay the 3.5k closing cost so we only had to foot about 2k out of pocket to buy our house.

We also shopped around at different banks to find the best interest rate. We ended up going with our own bank anyways at a 3.5% interest rate and we went with the option to have our taxes and insurances bundled in with our payments.

For our 155k house we were going to pay $632 a month but adding in the taxes/insurance we pay $955 a month.

Also make sure you get FIXED interest rate. I can't stress that enough. Our house recently had it's value increased to 186k and I've heard of people having to pay more on their house when prices fluctuate like that.
Wow that's a good price for your monthly payments! I was told to have our payments around $900 a month (with taxes and insurance included) we would have to buy something for $120K, that's with a 3% down, 3.5 interest rate, and taxes being around 2400 a year!
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  #30  
Old 02-28-2013, 02:57 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dianak9938

Wow that's a good price for your monthly payments! I was told to have our payments around $900 a month (with taxes and insurance included) we would have to buy something for $120K, that's with a 3% down, 3.5 interest rate, and taxes being around 2400 a year!
That's probably the difference in area - that tax amount is really high.. About triple what it is here! My fil recommends buying outside of city limits if you can. His house is across the street from the city line but he pays 1/3rd of the taxes of the people across the street!

We are looking to buy a house right now, one thing I've been told is get a good Realator who will listen to your wants & needs!
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  #31  
Old 02-28-2013, 03:47 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by snmhxf

That's probably the difference in area - that tax amount is really high.. About triple what it is here! My fil recommends buying outside of city limits if you can. His house is across the street from the city line but he pays 1/3rd of the taxes of the people across the street!

We are looking to buy a house right now, one thing I've been told is get a good Realator who will listen to your wants & needs!
That's crazy, I thought that was a good price for taxes not really anywhere cheaper than that around here I don't know where the outside of city limits would be around here either.. I want to get a good Realtor but there's like a million in this area and I've even tried googling things like "top rated/best realtor" and "realtor reviews" for my area and can't even find anything rating or reviewing them.
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  #32  
Old 02-28-2013, 09:39 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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I need to move wherever either of you live taxes here range from 4k in a ghetto neighborhood to 17k in a nicer one. Even the flood zone in the decent neighborhood is around 7k.
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  #33  
Old 03-01-2013, 02:56 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Oh my, I pay $900 a year property tax on a 4bdr/ba 2000 sq ft home on 1/4 lot, granted its a 100 years old and needs some work but still
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  #34  
Old 03-01-2013, 03:09 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Wow.. That's crazy all the differences.. The 2400 here a year would be something like a 3bed/1.5 bath, 1500 sq ft and maybe 1/8 acre ?
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  #35  
Old 03-01-2013, 03:10 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dianak9938

That's crazy, I thought that was a good price for taxes not really anywhere cheaper than that around here I don't know where the outside of city limits would be around here either.. I want to get a good Realtor but there's like a million in this area and I've even tried googling things like "top rated/best realtor" and "realtor reviews" for my area and can't even find anything rating or reviewing them.
Everyone says ask around... I sent an email at 10 pm on a Sunday about a home I found on homes.com and she replied, I knew I wanted to use mine then. We are meeting her for the first time tomorrow
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  #36  
Old 03-01-2013, 03:56 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by snmhxf

Everyone says ask around... I sent an email at 10 pm on a Sunday about a home I found on homes.com and she replied, I knew I wanted to use mine then. We are meeting her for the first time tomorrow
Well I've signed up at a few real estate websites in the area so I could save what I liked when looking at the houses on there. So about 3 or 4 would send me a welcome email "if there is anything we can help you with please do not hesitate to call or email us" so I sent an email to all of them, a long, detailed email on what I was looking for and what I had questions about. None of them appeared to even read my email because they never responded to it, they would just send me more emails saying the same thing and "we haven't heard back from you"! So I ended up sending it 2 or 3 times. Still no response to it specifically. Just one person had called me and I told her I sent an email with what I wanted and after a couple minutes she was like OH THERE IT IS! In other words.. Not impressed with any of those realtors!
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  #37  
Old 03-05-2013, 07:11 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dianak9938

Well I've signed up at a few real estate websites in the area so I could save what I liked when looking at the houses on there. So about 3 or 4 would send me a welcome email "if there is anything we can help you with please do not hesitate to call or email us" so I sent an email to all of them, a long, detailed email on what I was looking for and what I had questions about. None of them appeared to even read my email because they never responded to it, they would just send me more emails saying the same thing and "we haven't heard back from you"! So I ended up sending it 2 or 3 times. Still no response to it specifically. Just one person had called me and I told her I sent an email with what I wanted and after a couple minutes she was like OH THERE IT IS! In other words.. Not impressed with any of those realtors!
Those are probably automated messages being sent. .. Keep looking!
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  #38  
Old 03-05-2013, 07:35 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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I have another question...! I want to know the most we can get approved for on our mortgage loan. Pretty much I want the most expensive house we can afford (which isn't much ) we will only have our car/insurance and phone bills each month since we just got all our credit cards paid off so we'd be very comfortable having half of our monthly income go towards house bills, including everything insurance, tax, water, electric, gas, etc. we only spend about $70 a month on gas since my husband works for TWC and drives a company truck, I don't work. Plus cable and Internet is only $8 a month.
Anyway I don't want to request a loan for $80K, get approved, and then find the house of our dreams for $100K and wonder if we could have gotten that one. I also don't want to aim high and get denied, then have to try again again and mess up our credit.
I talked to a lady today and when I told her I wanted our monthly payments around $900, she said we should go for an 80-100K loan. But a couple years ago when we almost bought a house (then hubby got laid off), we were ore approved for a 110K loan, he was making a lot less money then too! And the payments were only going to be 700ish a month!
Confused.. Discouraged.. I tried to search for homes around here from 80-100K.. I found nothing but junk
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Old 03-05-2013, 07:45 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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You can apply and get preapproved for your mortgage before you find a house. Go to a mortgage broker and do it for real (I.e. with all the paycheck stubs, tax returns, etc., etc). Don't just do the quick preapproval, it doesn't mean much.

We did that to find out what our limits were and were approved for much more than we were willing to spend. We also had our interest rates and other stuff locked in for 45 days. It made it easier to shop because we could plug in the price, taxes, etc and get a real idea of our monthly payments to know if we could actually afford a place (taxes vary widely here, by thousands or tens of thousands for similar houses so it mattered a lot!)

Anyway, we started with the mortgage and didn't really look seriously for a house until that was secured. We ended up with a smaller mortgage for a smaller house in a better neighborhood (therefore higher taxes) so didn't even come close to our limit, but it was really helpful to start with the numbers.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:02 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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I went to my mortgage broker to discuss a loan. That was when my credit was on the poor side. He told me some things I could do to raise my score. I did them, went back later and my score was very good. I knew how much I was willing to borrow. He said my amount was fine, but if you ask they will surely tell you how much. I got a pre-approval letter stating how much of a mortgage I was approved for. That actually helped me I think, as when I put my bid on my short sale the owners accepted it (after trying to go higher, but we said no).

As for a realtor, I chose the one who was selling the home we liked. We asked her to show us other homes for comparison. We actually went out with a second realtor to see another home,minutes liked the first woman, so stuck with her. I did ask around and she had a good reputation. A friend of mine had several realtors all looking for homes for her. That is frowned upon due to the whole commission thing, but it was her time and her money, so that's how she worked it.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:18 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Having owned two homes and in the process of possibly building our dream home I have a few random thoughts about things I have learned. Houses cost more than what is on paper. They require accessories like mowers and water heaters and sewer lines and roofs. You need to plan to save money monthly to pay for this upkeep. You never know when the septic tank will collapse and they all eventually do. I have read that maybe as much as 10% of your house payment should be saved each month for future repairs.

Be prepared for property taxes to go up. Our house has gone down 60,000 in value and our taxes are up by $600. Also homeowners insurance goes up every year also.

Big houses are great....until you have to fix it. Everything costs more. More to heat, more walls to paint, more carpet to replace... I owned a "starter castle" and would never do it again. We downsized and are much happier. We are planning on building something just big enough for us with some of the high end features we like(walk in closets please) but not all of the overhead of the big houses. At one time I bought all I could afford and I could afford nothing else. My house was empty and so was my wallet. I can afford what I have now though it is not nearly what I did have, but our budget has breathing room and I have the money to fix something when it breaks. I do not know about now, but a few years ago they would approve you to the point you were eating beans and rice to live in a house, so if an approved number seems high it probably is.

Also remember many people trade up as they go along. They buy a small house. Fix it up over the years then sell it and move to a bigger one. Many of my friends did this. My sis recently bought a house for $30,000 lived in it a few years and updated everything and just sold it in this stinky market for $120,000 and bought herself a bigger house. If your first home is not your dream home do not worry. It is just a start.

Also shop mortgage brokers as their fees and services vary wildly. One place had a $3000 service fee on top of everything else. I asked for what. She stammered and blurted out newsletters and calendars. I said good bye.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:45 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susiem68 View Post
Having owned two homes and in the process of possibly building our dream home I have a few random thoughts about things I have learned. Houses cost more than what is on paper. They require accessories like mowers and water heaters and sewer lines and roofs. You need to plan to save money monthly to pay for this upkeep. You never know when the septic tank will collapse and they all eventually do. I have read that maybe as much as 10% of your house payment should be saved each month for future repairs.

Be prepared for property taxes to go up. Our house has gone down 60,000 in value and our taxes are up by $600. Also homeowners insurance goes up every year also.

Big houses are great....until you have to fix it. Everything costs more. More to heat, more walls to paint, more carpet to replace... I owned a "starter castle" and would never do it again. We downsized and are much happier. We are planning on building something just big enough for us with some of the high end features we like(walk in closets please) but not all of the overhead of the big houses. At one time I bought all I could afford and I could afford nothing else. My house was empty and so was my wallet. I can afford what I have now though it is not nearly what I did have, but our budget has breathing room and I have the money to fix something when it breaks. I do not know about now, but a few years ago they would approve you to the point you were eating beans and rice to live in a house, so if an approved number seems high it probably is.

Also remember many people trade up as they go along. They buy a small house. Fix it up over the years then sell it and move to a bigger one. Many of my friends did this. My sis recently bought a house for $30,000 lived in it a few years and updated everything and just sold it in this stinky market for $120,000 and bought herself a bigger house. If your first home is not your dream home do not worry. It is just a start.

Also shop mortgage brokers as their fees and services vary wildly. One place had a $3000 service fee on top of everything else. I asked for what. She stammered and blurted out newsletters and calendars. I said good bye.

I couldn't agree more! Someday, this is going to be my dream home - something along these lines....
http://www.tumbleweedhouses.com/blogs/tumbleweed

I also like this site...
Tiny House Blog - Living Simply in Small Spaces

:-)
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~I got a fever, and the only cure is....more coupons!~
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  #43  
Old 03-05-2013, 08:55 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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I love those. When the kids are gone DH and I want to live in an RV. Same idea but probably bigger
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  #44  
Old 03-05-2013, 09:44 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Please give me your advise on this. We have the opportunity to get a 2 story 5 bedroom 2 1/2 bath house. We would have to buy land, put in the basement and pay to have it moved. I am thinking we could do this for $80,000 or less. Is this crazy to look into??? We are going to look at it this weekend. Any advise would be appreciated.
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  #45  
Old 03-05-2013, 10:07 PM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RNSAMRN

I couldn't agree more! Someday, this is going to be my dream home - something along these lines....
http://www.tumbleweedhouses.com/blogs/tumbleweed

I also like this site...
Tiny House Blog - Living Simply in Small Spaces

:-)
That's so funny..! My husband was just showing me those a few days ago telling me it was going to be his next project!
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  #46  
Old 03-06-2013, 07:41 AM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mommymarci View Post
Please give me your advise on this. We have the opportunity to get a 2 story 5 bedroom 2 1/2 bath house. We would have to buy land, put in the basement and pay to have it moved. I am thinking we could do this for $80,000 or less. Is this crazy to look into??? We are going to look at it this weekend. Any advise would be appreciated.
Basements are not too expensive. If you are going to use it as living space go for the higher ceiling not the standard 8 foot deep basement. You will enjoy having the more open feeling. Do everything to make it dry. Do not scrimp on drain tiles or sump pump. Plan how you want it eventually finished now so you can get the plumbing in the correct place and you get the water heater not in the middle of your future game room. Do not finish the basement the first year. All basements can develop superficial cracks the first year due to settling and you want to fix those before finishing the walls. Also fix any leaks before finishing ( this is from experience) As far as moving a house...really talk to people. I have heard about lots of drywall damage, nail pops, out of whack doors and windows due to shifting of the structure, possible plumbing joints loosening. To quote my Dad....the house is never quite the same. But maybe things are better now. I would really clarify how much interior work you can expect after it is moved. What is your budget for repairing moving induced repairs. Is this a pristine house you are moving or is it basically a strip down to the shell and rebuild project? You could tolerate more damage to a rehab house than a perfect house.

Also what are the caps on transport overages? If the movers damage the house like run it off the road who pays for the house and clean up. Also will you be out a house at that point or are they insured to build you an equivalent house our will you be left with a big whole in the ground. If there is a problem and it takes longer on the road how much per hour are you going to have to pay for road closure, pilot vehicles...

Can you tell I get paid to come up with worst case scenarios

Please let us know. It sounds like a great deal if it works out.
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  #47  
Old 03-06-2013, 08:08 AM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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I would recommend that you get impound accounts that way you don't pay things like insurance and tax out of pocket they will be paid out of the impounds; what that is is an account attached to your mortgage that money goes in every month then they pay your property tax and insurance for you. It is everything all in one.
Also if you can buy a fixer upper property for cheaper than the selling price, even if you were approved for a higher loan amount you can still get the full amount to use to fix the house. Say your loan amount is 100k and you get a house at 75k you can still have 25k put into an extra account for expenses to fix the house. Hope that helps.
If you are not comfortable using the drawers for silverware I use containers for mine that sit on my counter.
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  #48  
Old 03-06-2013, 08:21 AM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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I was wondering if you could do that! That's the only reason I don't want a fixer upper is because we don't have the extra money for it, I'd love to do it if we could! Is that with an FHA loan you can do that?
Another question is I am looking at mortgage companies and am seeing a lot of places online. Is there anything wrong with using a bank online rather than somewhere local?
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  #49  
Old 03-06-2013, 08:30 AM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stems71 View Post
I would recommend that you get impound accounts that way you don't pay things like insurance and tax out of pocket they will be paid out of the impounds; what that is is an account attached to your mortgage that money goes in every month then they pay your property tax and insurance for you. It is everything all in one.
Also if you can buy a fixer upper property for cheaper than the selling price, even if you were approved for a higher loan amount you can still get the full amount to use to fix the house. Say your loan amount is 100k and you get a house at 75k you can still have 25k put into an extra account for expenses to fix the house. Hope that helps.
If you are not comfortable using the drawers for silverware I use containers for mine that sit on my counter.
Our mortgage calls it an escrow account. Many make it mandatory until you have 20% equity in the house. Depends how you look at it. You do not have to be responsible for saving and holding onto that money which I know is hard for some people. But in areas like ours where taxes plus insurance on even a small house(1600 sq feet) are 7,000 and up a year and at one time when Cd rates were 6% you would lose big money to the mortgage company who would be sitting on almost one year of your taxes and insurance. A person could put that money into short term CDs and make a little. Then it is a nightmare if they screw it up and do not send in the payment correctly!

It is a matter of personal preference. Also look at all your finance options and their costs in the long run. FHA vs conventional vs VA. We chose FHA because it had a low down payment but they tacked on a huge fee to the loan which could be prorated refunded if you refinanced within 5 years. At the time home values were climbing and we knew the house we bought was sold under market. A few months later we had it reappraised. Suddenly it was amazingly worth a whole lot more, we had our 20% equity, got a coventional loan with no pmi and got out of the FHA fee. We knew the appraiser and told him our intentions and told him to push the appraisal as high as believable.


Two years later when they tried to jack our property taxes we called the same appraiser and paid him to do an appraisal and appraise it as low as believable. We won that arguement also. A good appraiser is worth knowing
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  #50  
Old 03-06-2013, 08:36 AM

RE: Any tips on buying a house?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dianak9938 View Post
I have another question...! I want to know the most we can get approved for on our mortgage loan. Pretty much I want the most expensive house we can afford (which isn't much ) we will only have our car/insurance and phone bills each month since we just got all our credit cards paid off so we'd be very comfortable having half of our monthly income go towards house bills, including everything insurance, tax, water, electric, gas, etc. we only spend about $70 a month on gas since my husband works for TWC and drives a company truck, I don't work. Plus cable and Internet is only $8 a month.
Anyway I don't want to request a loan for $80K, get approved, and then find the house of our dreams for $100K and wonder if we could have gotten that one. I also don't want to aim high and get denied, then have to try again again and mess up our credit.
I talked to a lady today and when I told her I wanted our monthly payments around $900, she said we should go for an 80-100K loan. But a couple years ago when we almost bought a house (then hubby got laid off), we were ore approved for a 110K loan, he was making a lot less money then too! And the payments were only going to be 700ish a month!
Confused.. Discouraged.. I tried to search for homes around here from 80-100K.. I found nothing but junk
Things have changed drastically in the mortgage industry in just a few years....in general, loans take much longer to go through and they are stricter about qualifying criteria. I would be very surprised if any reputable lender approved anyone these days for a loan requiring 50% of your income.

IMO (not meant as a criticism, just an observation) you are worrying and fretting about things and what-ifs instead of finding out the concrete facts. (I do this too sometimes). If you are serious about buying a house, you need both a realtor and a mortgage pre-approval. If you have a lender you want to deal with, get the pre-approval first. If you don't, contact a realtor and they can tell you some of the good lending companies in your area. Or you can do both at the same time, depending on your circumstances. If you aren't sure of who would be good, ask people you know in your community for recommendations -- other school parents, people at your church, etc.

Once you know what you can COMFORTABLY afford to purchase, your realtor can show you properties that best meet your wish list. No one gets everything they want unless they have unlimited dollars and build to suit, even if they buy a million dollar house. Don't have unrealistic expectations about "the perfect house", and realize that expenses (both for the house and for raising a family) increase over time, and you can't guarantee in these days that your income will do the same. Leave a cushion.
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