buying a home

It’s one of the largest purchases you will ever make.

Yet, buying a house is also one of the most sentimental because it’s not just a house—it’s your home.

Your decision to buy a house may be based on many factors: a growing family, building wealth, or creating tax benefits.

Buying a home

When considering the cost of owning your home, your expenses don’t end with the mortgage. You must also factor in taxes, insurance, maintenance, and utilities. Other potential costs could include homeowner association fees, lawn care, security system monitoring, and window treatments.

How much can you afford?

Your lifestyle should also be a consideration. Do you like city or suburban living? What are the schools like in the areas you are considering? Even if you don’t have children, better school districts usually equate to better resale values.

Lastly, are you thinking about buying a home for the right reasons? Do it because it is something you want, not because others think it is time to do so. Don’t do it just because home loan rates are low.

Once you’ve considered the costs and decided to move ahead with the home purchase, there are several general guidelines that will help make the home-buying process smoother. Click here for more on the buying transaction.

Download our Home Buying Quick Guide


What about insurance?

Home Inspections

A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a house, from the roof to the foundation. It is one of the most important things a buyer can do to ensure that the home purchase is a good buy that won’t cost a lot of money and cause stress.

Inspectors should cover at least the following: foundation, walls, roof, insulation, windows, doors, kitchen, bathroom, laundry, water heater, furnace, ventilation, air conditioning, electrical systems, plumbing, and outdoor areas.

They should also look at do-it-yourself projects, making sure, for instance, that ceiling fans are installed correctly and backyard decks are safe. Even new construction should be inspected.

The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) and the National Association of Home Inspectors, Inc. (NAHI) provide education, training, and certification for home inspectors.

Find inspectors in your area by visiting, or

First-Time Homebuyer

First-time homebuyers are not necessarily buyers who are purchasing their very first home. You can also qualify as a first-time homebuyer if you have not owned a home in the past three years.

Saving enough money for a down payment can be a hurdle for many first-time homebuyers. That’s why Redstone Federal Credit Union® offers special programs to help first-time homebuyers.

Some programs allow funds for closing costs and down payment to be in the form of gifts or for the seller to pay some or all of your closing costs. The opportunity for home ownership is closer than you think. Click here to view down payment assistance programs.

Planning Your Move

Start planning your move soon after you get a closing date. An early start can pay off in many ways: you can sort through your belongings at your own pace. Donate used clothing and other household goods and earn a tax deduction, and you can schedule a yard sale for the other items you no longer need.

If you can schedule your move in the “off-peak season” from September through April, when demand for moving services is lower, you may get a better price and find that movers may be more flexible about their pickup and delivery dates.

If you do need to move during the summer, try to schedule it mid-month and/or mid-week, since the busiest times for movers are weekends and the end of the month, which may also mean a lower price. Go to for free quotes from professional movers.

Download your moving checklist

Sick of Your Landlord?


Learn how easy it is to own a home with the money you already spend on rent. Download the guide for more info.


How to Save on Home Insurance

How to save on insurance video

Helpful Resources

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House Bargain or Overpriced?

Find out how much homes really sold for compared to their listing prices for 13 distinct neighborhoods in the Huntsville area. And, get insight into where to start your bidding! Download the guide.

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