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Buyer & Seller Information


Buyer & Seller Information

Are you thinking about buying or selling your home? There's a lot to consider from your family's needs, to financial considerations, to how long your commute from work will be. Below you will find resources such as links to websites, articles, glossaries, and more which will help you decide the right move for you and your family.

Homes-Columbia Blog: The new home of my real estate blog full of information, how-tos, tips, tricks, and more about home selling, home buying, finances and mortgages, renovation, home improvement, insurance, refinancing, money saving tips, and much, much more. 

Finder of Dreams: My real estate blog archive with 5+ years of news and information about home buying, home selling, staging, mortgages, finances, home improvement and renovation, and some really spectacular houses featured on "Fantasy Fridays".

There is a lot to know about real estate. Click on the following links to jump to that topic:

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Realtors & Real Estate Agents

Do I Need a Real Estate Agent? (DailyWorth)
Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Real Estate Agents (The Balance)
Top 10 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Agent (The Balance)
Finding a Real Estate Agent (The Balance)
How to Interview a Real Estate Agent (The Balance)
Real Estate Agents and REALTORS (The Balance)
Do You Need a Listing Agent and a Buying Agent? (The Balance) 

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Home Buying:

Buy or Rent? 

The Misleading Math Behind the Rent vs. Buy Calculation (
Here's a Better Way to Calculate the True Rent vs. Buy Costs (
Rent vs Buy Calculator (Lending Tree)
Rent or Buy? (Trulia)
Rent or Buy? (
Buy Or Rent: Why It Could Be Better To Buy In 2017 (The Mortgage Reports)
Buy or rent your next home (Bankrate)Should You Buy a Home or Keep Renting? (The Motley Fool)
8 questions to ask yourself when deciding to rent or buy a house (USA Today/
Ready to Buy a Home? ( Use this checklist of questions to ask yourself to decide if you're financially prepared for the responsibility of homeownership.

Sign up to receive the Free 40+ page Home Buyers Guide

HUD Home Buying Guide (

Planning Your First Home Buying Experience (Zillow)

Buying a Home - how to prepare for home ownershipp, the process of a home loan, finding a home (Guild Mortgage)

Home Buying Checklist (Real Simple)

Home checklist (

Home Search Checklist

Dream Home Wish List - factors to consider when home searching (Guild Mortgage)

Finding the Perfect Neighborhood - neighborhood factors to consider (Guild Mortgage)

Preapproval/prequalification knowing what you can afford

You're read about the importance of using a real estate agent,now how do you find an agent

Home search checklist

Things to think about - acreage/HOA and amenities/school district/taxes

Making an offer/negotiating

Avoiding buyer's remorse

Home inspections/unexpected costs

Closing process

Buyer's Advice from Realty Times Real Estate News and Advice - a wealth of articles and information from real estate professionals

Home Buying Information from The Balance - The Balance is a website dedicated to financial empowerment. Their home buying articles cover all stages of the home buying process from the basics to loans and financing, finding an agent and writing offers to the home inspection process and beyond.

Avoiding Financial Stress

Build a Plan of Action and Get Ready

Finding the Right Seller

Getting a Legitimate Lender and Getting Pre-Approved

Hot, Normal, and Cold Markets

Importance of Inspection

Is Buying a Home Still a Smart Plan

Thinking About Buying a Foreclosure

Use a Buyer's Agent

Why You Should Not Make Any Major Credit Purchases

The Home-Buying Process in Plain English with Elizabeth Banks (


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First Time Home Buyers:

First Time Home Buyer 101 (

First Time Home Buyers Guide - Tips and Advice (Shine Insurance)

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Financing & Mortgages:

Mortgage 101 (


How to Get a Mortgage (DailyWorth)

Mortgage Definitions (DailyWorth)

Mortgage Calculator


Adjustable Rate Mortgages - The Pros and Cons

Adjustable Rate Mortgages-The Basics

Closing Costs When Buying or Refinancing a Home

Documenting Your Assets - Verifying Your Down Payment

FICO® Score - a Brief Explanation

FICO® Scores and Your Mortgage

Items You Need When Applying For a Loan

Explore VA Benefits: Overview of home loans and how to apply (U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs)


Land Contract

The Advantages of Different Types of Mortgage Lenders

The Biweekly Mortgage - Who Needs It?

The No-Cost Thirty Year Fixed Rate Mortgage

Types of Mortgage Lenders

What's a FICO®?

Where Does the Money Come From for Mortgage Loans?

Which ARM is the Best Alternative?

Your Savings and Down Payment

After the closing: Moving Tips, Tricks and Hacks

DIY| Must Have Moving Tips! (WhatsUpMoms)


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Title and Escrow:

Closing and Title Costs

Creative Financing

Required Reporting to the IRS

Statements of Information

The Functions of an Escrow

Title Insurance - Where Does Your Dollar Go?

Title Insurance Requirements for Insuring Trusts

Title Insurance When Refinancing Your Loan

Understanding Preliminary Reports

Understanding Title Insurance

Why Do You Need Title Insurance


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Home Sellers:

Sign up to receive the FREE 20+ page Home Sellers Guide

Seller's Advice from Realty Times Real Estate News and Advice - a wealth of articles and information from real estate professionals

Century 21: Ready to Sell? Video Series (#C21ReadyToSell with Jolie Kerr)

Considering Offers

Finding the Right Agent

For Sale By Owner - A Good Idea

Getting the Highest Price in the Shortest Time

Insist on a Home Inspection

Know Why You are Selling

Making a Good First Impression

Plan of Action

Setting the Price

What is a Short Sale Anyway

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Home Staging

Why stage

Staging on a budget, staging a home you're living in 

Essential Home Staging Tips from The New York Times - the best ideas for presenting your home to prospective home buyers

Home Staging Tips: First Impressions Buyers Will Notice

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Homeowner Information:

Preparedness and Safety (Insurance Information Institute)

Homeowners Insurance

Twelve Ways to Lower Your Homeowners Insurance Costs (


Flood Insurance

National Flood Insurance Program (Insurance Informative Institute)

Facts About Flood Insurance (Insurance Informative Institute)


Am I Covered? ( Answers 15 common questions regarding homeowners insurance and explains what is covered in a standard policy.

A Healthy Home for Everyone: The Guide for Families and Individuals ( Action steps for making your home healthy, definitions for words used in the booklet, and a resource section to find more information about a making your home a healthy home


Cooling Your Home Naturally ( Common sense suggestions and low-cost alternatives to air conditioning that will help keep your home cool and save electricity while doing it. 


Poison-proof Your Home: One Room at a Time Checklist ( Most poisonings happen in a child's home, but some take place outside of it, such as while visiting the home of a friend, family member, or babysitter. For this reason, it's critical that all caregivers of children make a room-by-room inspection of their homes for improperly stored pesticide products, things that are used to control or kill ants, cockroaches, mice, rats, or termites.


Your Home Inventory ( How to create a home inventory to keep track of your belongings, buy the proper amount of insurance, get property insurance claims settled faster, and verify losses for your tax return.


Surges Happen! How to Protect the Appliances in Your Home ( Find out what power surges are, what appliances need protection, and what devices work best.

Common Ways of Holding Title

Condominium and PUD Ownership

Environmental Issues

Lead Poisoning

Living Trusts

Mechanics Liens



Underground Heating Oil Tanks

Understanding Foreclosures

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Home Improvement & Design:

Homeowner's Glossary of Building Terms ( Taking on a home improvement project can open a whole new world of terms you may not know. Here's a quick reference to help you keep up with the language of the trade.


Design & Home Improvement (Zillow) 


Home Entertaining & Decorating Advice Featuring Douglas Calhoun (Zillow)

Fixing Up Your Home and How to Finance It ( Information about hiring a contractor, doing the work yourself, and the HUD Title 1 home improvement loan program.


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Real Estate Glossary (Century 21)

Glossary of Real Estate Terms



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CENTURY 21® National Market Update

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house mls


JP & Associates Realtors 
Magnolia Group

Julie Smith | 803-476-6450 | Contact Me
Columbia, South Carolina
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