Advice for Home Buyers: The HBI Learning Center

Welcome to the Home Buying Institute research library. This page has been designed as a starting point for your home-buying education. You can get back here from anywhere on our website just by clicking "advice" in the main menu.

Home Buying Process

How does the home buying process work? What steps are involved? And what do you need to get started? These are common questions among first-time buyers. We've created a number of tutorials to help you understand the overall process of buying a home, and to navigate your way through it.

Mortgages 101 graphic

Fixed-rate. ARM. Conventional. FHA. When it comes to mortgage financing, home buyers have a lot of options to choose from. It can be downright confusing. We've created a series of articles to help you understand the different types of loans, and to choose the best option for you.

Make an offer graphic

The purchase offer is one of the most important stages in the buying process. Get it right, and the home could be yours. Get it wrong, and that house could slip through your fingers. The articles below will help you make a strong offer based on current market trends in your area.

Down payments graphic

The down payment is typically one of the biggest obstacles for home buyers. But it might not be as big a hurdle as you think. For example, most of the mortgage programs available today allow borrowers to use gift money from third parties. Learn more about this topics below.

Home inspections graphic

Home inspections give buyers a chance to conduct a thorough and professional examination of the property they are considering. And that's a pretty big deal. They usually cost somewhere between $300 and $500. But the peace of mind you get in return is priceless.

Underwriting process graphic

Underwriting is an important part of the mortgage process because it can make the difference between loan approval or denial. It also generates a lot of questions from home buyers. The hand-picked articles below will give you a better sense of what happens during this stage.

Closing process graphic

From a buyer's perspective, closing day represents the last major step in the home buying process. And there are a lot of moving pieces. You'll sign documents, pay off your closing costs, and get the keys to your new home. Here are some things to know about this final step.

The articles above have been carefully selected by the editor's of this website. They will give you a good introduction to the world of home buying process. This website contains hundreds of additional lessons that are not shown above. You can find more home buying tips and advice by using the search box at the top of this page.

Is There Something We Missed?

We publish new information on a regular basis. If you have questions about the home buying process that have not been covered above, feel free to send us an email. That kind of feedback helps us improve our website, by offering more information around topics that are important to home buyers like yourself.