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Costs during home buying process during the COVID-19 climate

We just bought a house and whewwwwww buddy! What a not-so-fun ride. lol

We're all moved in after closing on our house in November 2020.

Now that the holidays are past us, I wanted to sit down and type this out... share my experience.

We did all of this without much of a downpayment. Adviseable? No. Doable? Yes.

We hired/found our realtor through a lender we wanted to go through - a credit union.

The credit union gave us an incentive for using a partnered realtor - $!

We gathered a list of houses that we wanted to check out. We used Zillow and

We toured a couple of houses and fell in love with one of them.

Thus, begins the ride.

Here are the expenses, pre- and post-closing on our house, that we dished out and let me just add... making an offer on a house is a serious ordeal and you have to be prepared to move fast. Goodness. I think I still have whiplash. lol

  • Pre-approval for mortgage - Applying for a mortgage is free. Since our credit score was in the 800s, we decided to see what rates we could get. I'm pretty happy with the rate we got on a home loan that allowed for 0% down and assisted with closing costs. Navy Federal Credit Union's (or any credit union) rates were the lowest and the type of loan we wanted was juuuuust right for the amount that we wanted to spend.

  • Earnest Money - 1% of the agreed upon price and an option fee, which I don't think we had to pay an option fee this time

  • Inspection fee(s) - ~$500-$700 As soon as the earnest money is paid and the contract to buy is signed by both parties, you have 10 days to schedule inspections until you can't be refunded the earnest money (I think that last bit is correct but am feeling a little unsure at the moment.)

  • Appraisal fee - ~$500 I think it was about this amount. The waiting period for the results was about 2 weeks.

At this point we were already swallowing hard, like "Ugh. Money we don't want to end up losing and what if this all falls through and then we're out $X for all those things (except for the1% earnest money)"

It was all worth it in the end, but the process was a rocky road.

The loan processor we were working with at the beginning... he got fired or quit during the whole process. We eventually had a new loan processor A WEEK BEFORE CLOSING! Guh! We had our hearts set on a closing date before our rent lease was up. That's when we learned that additional documentation was needed from us. Poor, new loan processor could probably sense our frustration. We scurried around to get everything quickly submitted, which included printing documents at Office Max so that we could sign on paper, take a picture of it and email to the loan processor. And yes... they clarified the expectation - print to paper and sign.

THEN there was the amount that we needed to bring to closing.


Did we have enough saved? Was it going to be a surprise number? ::biting our finger nails::

Hopefully my budgeting and saving skills prepared us... I should know these things, right? How does the personal finance person NOT KNOW THIS, ASHLEY?

Okay, calm thyself... talking to myself really. haha

After about 5 weeks from making the offer, we actually walked out of the title department with a check IN HAND! ;-) <3

Most closings require that the buyer come with a (big) check in hand, but it worked out for us in the end that we didn't need to. :) Perhaps a miscommunication from loan processor or loan officer? I'm not sure, but I'm not even mad about it.

Alas, that was our experience.

Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoyed this.

I'm slowly building my business and working on my goals.

If you're a friend of mine who has undoubtedly witnessed my passion for personal finances, thank you for supporting me and listening to my advice. I truly hope it's helped. You know you're always welcome to message me for guidance.

If you're a stranger who's happened to stumble upon this post, welcome. Peruse my site. Get to know me. I take pride in my authenticity and candor. I have a self-deprecating humor that others find quite comical.

I've dabbled in a lot of personal finance topics! Visit my Meet Ashley page and scroll down to "THE PAST" section for a lengthy list of my experiences, including buying a house to flip!

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Much love,


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