Buying a Home in the Military? Start with This Guide from MilitaryByOwner
Is your military family considering taking the plunge to become homeowners? Congratulations!
This is an exciting time, but one that is also filled with questions. After all, buying a home as a military family is a completely different experience from civilian home buyers. We typically deal with a shorter window for home shopping, may be shopping for homes at a distance, or even have one spouse signing all the paperwork while the other is deployed or traveling. Whew! Sounds stressful. But don't be deterred if home buying is your goal. We've been where you're headed.
You don't need to go it alone! We here at MilitaryByOwner are constantly researching and putting together resources for military home buyers, including articles, videos, ebooks, and blog posts. Use our vast experience to your advantage! Let's take a look at some factors military members and families usually consider when it comes to the home buying process.
Guide to Buying a Home in the Military
Should a Military Family Buy a Home?
This is a common question. After all, is it completely nuts to purchase a home when you know you'll only live in it for a handful of years? Not necessarily.
Many military families would rather own a home vs. renting, even when they know it will only be for a few years, or view a home purchase as an investment opportunity--planning to either return and live in the home later or maintain it as a rental property for additional income. Start with these resources, including information on how to make the best decision for your situation.
- Should Military Families Buy or Rent a Home?
- What Military Families Should Know Before Buying a Home
- Should Military Members Buy a Home? Use the 1% Rule to Decide!
Buying a Home Long Distance
As a military family, you know that when you make a military move, you'll typically only have a few days of house hunting to tour homes and make a decision. Add to that the nuances of military life that rarely accommodate the traditional home buying timeline. While not the ideal scenario, you may be doing the bulk of your home shopping long distance before you ever arrive at a duty station.
When you're new to an area, you'll likely be relying on the advice of a real estate agent regarding neighborhoods and areas. Take a look at the following helpful hints, including the neighborhood reviews on Military Town Advisor from other military families who've lived where you're headed! And consider the services of a Realtor with the Military Relocation Professional certification, which means they will be well versed in the peculiarities of military life and have a better understanding of what you're looking for.
- How to Buy a Home From a Distance
- Tips to Make Your Pre-PCS Househunting Trip a Success
- Military Town Advisor
- Why You Should Consider Using a Military Relocation Professional
Common Pitfalls for Military Home Buyers
When you do find the home of your dreams, it's easy to let all your best intentions regarding budget, location, and unchangeable characteristics like school district fly right out the window. (And fixer upper? Sure, you've got nothing but time and energy to deal with renovations, right?)
The following information will help keep your wits about you and not fall prey to some of the most common home buying mistakes.
- 7 Common Mistakes Home Buyers Make
- What Military Families Should Know Before Buying a New Construction Home
- Househunting Tips and Mistakes to Avoid
- Avoid These Emotional Mistakes When Buying a Home
Understanding Home Financing
VA Loan, mortage pre-approval and pre-qualification, FICO score... what does it all mean, anyway? Perhaps you're familiar with the terms but need more understanding.
Start here to get your finances in order and even discover some money saving tips and rebates for military home buyers!
- What to Know About Your Finances Before Buying a Home
- How Much Does Pre-Approval Matter for My Mortgage?
- Home Financing Options for Military and Veteran Home Buyers
- Rebates and Incentives for Military Home Buyers and Sellers
- Mortgage 101: Your Basic Questions Answered
- Understanding the Different Types of Home Loans
Countdown to Closing Day
So you've made it through home shopping, have been pre-approved for a home loan, and are ready to make an offer....but you're not quite finished yet!
The end is in sight, but there are still a few steps before you hold the house keys in your hand: the home inspection (especially the particulars required for a VA Home Loan), any contingencies, and the paperwork required on closing day. Of course, your agent will walk you through much of this process, but it's always a good thing to be armed with info! Take a look at:
- Making an Offer and Closing on Your New Home
- Closing Day and Moving Into Your New Home
- What to Expect When You Close on a Home