>Well, we’re offically looking to buy our first home! We’ve got a realtor and we’re signing papers with a mortgage broker on Saturday to get our pre-approval letter so we can start putting down serious offers. In fact we looked at our first house yesterday however the house was not in an ideal condition for us to buy. The roof had started leaking and created water damage, and the landlord seemed like the type who wasn’t caring enough about the condition enough to ask the tenants to not smoke in the house. It was going into forclosure, which is why we went to look. We were interested in another house but since we couldn’t go see inside yet, we did decide to at least drive by it to see the outside of it. And good thing we did beacuse there was a busted out window so who knows how long that was broken, and there was a couch upside down on the front lawn and there was someone driving across the front lawn in their pickup truck. Needless to say, we’re not going to see that house. We’re going to see a few houses tomorrow; hopefully one of them is in great shape! They are all within our price range, so hopefully one of them is the one! One looks promising; it’s alot of house -over 2,000 square feet- and their asking only $150,000. It’s in a very good neighborhood, so I’m sure there’s probably already bids on it, so hopefully we can get in and put a bid in as well.
One thing though we’ve been tossing around is if we should apply for the $7,500 tax credit that’s for first time home buyers. Basically it’s more like a interest free loan you can apply for by filling out a form with your taxes and in addition to your regular federal and state return, you will also recieve an additional $7,500. And you pay it back by the IRS witholding $500 from your federal tax return for 15 years. There’s of course alot of stipulations involved such as income limitations, you have to have bought your house within a specific time period, and if you sell your house within a certain time and you make a profit, they can legally claim the money back out of your profit… a whole bunch of stuff but for most people, it’s actually worth it. I’m not going to get into the nitty gritty details here because I’m not a financial guru or whatever and I don’t actually blog for a living, but here’s a link directly that gives all the information about it.
The biggest hurdle for us is that we NEED our tax return so we can use it as a down payment on our house, so we can’t really wait around for the papers to be signed to get the money because the form does require you to give the address of the home you’re buying or have bought. We could file our taxes, and then amend it later, but unless our house needs work we don’t plan on doing it. The house we looked at yesterday would have been an ideal home for it; however between the water damage and the roof and the fact the family that lives in the house are all heavy smokers, it’s too much work and Jeff’s not handy around the house so it would have been a money sink and not an investment.
I’m not saying that everyone who reads this should go for it; however if you feel that in your personal situation that it will reduce stress and improve your house overall, go for it. But be sure to talk to a financial person or an accountant before you do it because on the surface it may seem like a good idea but when you put it on paper it won’t work out.
Anyway, wish us luck on our house hunting!