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Home Buying for Dummies (For Dummies)

3.57  ·  Rating Details ·  491 Ratings  ·  77 Reviews
Now updated -- America's #1 bestselling home-buying book! Want to buy a house, but concerned about the market? Have no fear -- this trusted guide arms you with Eric Tyson and Ray Brown's time-tested advice and updated strategies for buying a home in current market conditions. You'll discover how to find the right property, make smart financial decisions, and understand the ...more
ebook, 384 pages
Published April 1st 2009 by For Dummies (first published 1996)
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Aug 03, 2013 Lobstergirl rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, reference
Homebuying really depends on your particular market. Some markets are unique (New York City, for example). Buying a condo is fairly different from buying a single family house. Obtaining a mortgage, I hear, is quite a bit different today than it was before the financial meltdown. Real estate laws differ by state. So whatever general, all-purpose book you read, if you're a first time buyer, is never going to tell you everything you need to know. But if you are buying for the first time, or buying ...more
Feb 22, 2015 Melanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, 2015
I think this book deserves 4 stars. It explains big and small aspects of purchasing a home in language I could understand. We'll see how well it prepared me once I put the knowledge to the test!
Mark Heiliger
Oct 20, 2016 Mark Heiliger rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Everything you need to know is in here - and then some. Seriously, I was overloaded with information, so I just decided to hire a real estate agent and let them guide me through the process. You CAN buy a house without an agent, but it probably ain't worth the trouble.
Oct 07, 2008 Meredith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Since we've bought a house, I guess I'm finished reading this book.

I learned some good things from this book, but I think it was aimed at someone looking to buy their dream home that they plan to live in forever. Paul and I were looking to buy our first home, and we would have been happy with any number of different homes as long as they met our price, space, and functional requirements; we weren't planning on spending months and months looking at every house on the market.

One thing in particula
May 17, 2009 Brian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good resource if you are a first time homebuyer, and some good tips and things to remember even if you aren't.

Top take aways:

Take the emotions out of it. There are plenty of other homes to choose from.

Find a good agent that knows what they are doing and is not just looking for a quick sale. Sometimes they will show you 3 houses they know you won't like, and they 4th one they want to steer you into (it will look much better buy comparision). It is the 5th one that they don't show you that maybe
Jan 08, 2009 Krista rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a very clear, understandable, and readable book on buying a home. I keep returning to it to look up things I don't understand, and it's always explained clearly. This book complements "10 Steps to Buying a Home for First-Time Buyers" very well; "HBFD" focuses mostly on the practical while "10 Steps" discusses the emotional issues of buying a home and goes into far greater detail on how to identify what you want. "10 Steps" reads a little bit like having your mother's voice in your ear ca ...more
Dec 21, 2010 Lynsey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book that takes you through the homebuying process from the decision to buy through your first steps after taking ownership. I would have liked to see more about the differences in negotiating the prices of existing homes versus new construction in a subdivision -- can I even negotiate in these situations? I'm still not sure, but that wasn't an option I was considering when I purchased the book, so I'm not sure I can fault the book for not including that information. Overall, the best ...more
Jan 05, 2008 Julie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Paula
I listened to this book on CD--a great way to let all the previously confusing notions of home buying simply wash over "one." I've also listened to TIPS & TRAPS WHEN BUYING A HOME/Irwin (really good) and THE AUTOMATIC MILLIONAIRE HOMEOWNER/Bach (the first disc is prattle, but there are some decent tips in the next few). Also trying to make it through GUERRILLA NEGOTIATING/Levinson (pretty boring). And, now, I'm listening faithfully to MORTGAGES FOR DUMMIES/Tyson (very similar to HOME BUYING ...more
Jul 27, 2009 kathy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i bought this years ago when i first considered buying a house, and while the info is a bit outdated for the current house buying climate (i.e. entire sections about arms and 0% down mortgages can be skipped because they don't exist anymore), i felt it really gave me a firm handle on the life decision i was about to make. in my case it pushed me off the fence and let me know i really was ready, but for some folks it may be a needed reality check that they still have a good deal of preparation to ...more
Jan 26, 2008 Kristyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008, books-i-own
Phew! The book must have worked, because we got through the home buying process without any major hang-ups, worked with good people, and got a wonderful house. I think it's really important to read a book about buying a house before you make such a big purchase. This one is a good choice. The authors did a good job explaining everything you need to do, and watch out for, and they do it in language that no one should have problems comprehending.
Sep 13, 2011 Meg rated it liked it
I did NOT finish this book.

I grabbed it off a shelf a couple of years ago because ONE DAY, I would like to buy a house. After reading the first two chapters, I realized that I am not financially ready to buy a house. :) First I need to finish paying off my school loans and random debt. That is my goal for the year----once I finish that, then I will continue reading this book.

Well-written, easy to understand.....and inspiration to put my budget in order.
I had to move this from my "reading" shelf to my "read" shelf simply because it was due to go back to the library. I read more than half of it, and it's really a reference book anyway. I thought it was okay. It's easy to read and there is a lot of nice basic/common knowledge information in it. I don't know if I "learned" anything, but there were some helpful lists. It's not bad, but I probably won't ever reference it.
Pamela Hubbard
Nov 15, 2012 Pamela Hubbard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
This book is meant for people who know little or nothing about the home buying process. It is extremely thorough, covering everything from mortgages to escrow, insurance to how to shop for an agent and inspector. Terms are defined simply so that the book is not overwhelming. I took a lot of notes and learned a lot. Some sections I skimmed because I had already done some research and talked to a lot of people who have purchased houses. I do recommend that first time homebuyers read this!
Christopher Petrillo
Good but a bit outdated (understandable for an older edition book). While the book addressed buying a home for homeowners, I got the feeling the authors are speculative real estate investors and that type of strategy permeated their writing. Not in a bad way, if you can take their advice with a grain of salt, but it definitely seemed to be catered a bit towards the investor instead of the future homeowner.
Apr 06, 2008 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: um, prospective homebuyers
Shelves: 2008-reads
Very helpful book, written plainly enough to be understood by those of us not overly familiar with "fixed vs. adjustable rate" and the like, but not dumbed down to the point of being insulting. I feel better prepared to face the real estate market head on, and I now know never to close escrow on a Monday. Thanks, Dummies authors.
Feb 16, 2008 Jane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very practical & informative book if you're looking to buy a home. Easy to read, easy to understand. Even if you read only a few chapters, it may end up saving you thousands of dollars. Even our realtor was impressed with the knowledge we'd gained & said it was spot-on.
If you're buying a home, READ THIS BOOK!
Oct 21, 2007 Amanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book puts the whole process into very plain language, as you'd expect from the "Dummies" line. I went into the home-buying process with no knowledge and this book got me up to speed. It was informative, easy to read, and interesting. From deciding on renting vs. purchasing, condo vs. house, to signing on the dotted line, you'll have almost every question answered.
Apr 19, 2016 Sergio rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: first time homebuyers
This is an essential read for all first-time homebuyers. The book is written in a very easy-to-follow format and offers a wealth of information that both newbies and veterans to the real estate game can learn from. I'll definitely be keeping this book around as a reference for my next homebuying experience.
Jan 07, 2009 Steve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What I learned......uhhhhh......everything. Takes you step-by-step through the home buying process and prepares you for just about everything. It takes you from budgeting all the way to the closing table. I felt informed and knowledgeable heading into every situation and I'd recommend this book to anyone considering their first home purchase.
Jan 15, 2009 Aaron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: how-to, non-fiction
Found this very useful. They did spend an awful lot of time in the first part of the book talking about things that don't apply to me, but I can see how they'd be useful for many other people. I wish I'd read the part on "picking a realtor" before I picked one -- I would have been much better off!

My first cover-to-cover Dummies book.
Jan 02, 2009 Jennie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
We've been renting for nearly 8 years, and I read this to feel like I sort of know what I'm doing if we take the leap and buy a house in the next year or two (?). The info was so good I took notes, and I feel much more confident with the whole process now. I highly recommend the book to any potential buyers.
Jun 17, 2009 Hannah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-books
For the record, someone went to the library to pick up the non-judgmentally-titled Nolo book on buying a home in California and brought me home this instead. But this book ended up really meeting my needs--it lays out everything you could ever want to know and provides easily applied rules of thumb, helping you navigate what is often an unruly and confusing process.
Sep 12, 2007 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book had everything I needed to learn about the home buying process, and I knew nothing before. It really helped me to dispel the myths I was hearing constantly from others when we were preparing to buy a house.
Feb 14, 2008 Cailean rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: have-read
As cliche as it might sound, this book really did help us understand home buying from the "ground" up, no pun intended! I would recommend this book to anyone who really wants to understand more than they need to (that's always my M.O.).
Shelly Manus
Apr 08, 2013 Shelly Manus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Understandable resource. My only wish is that the authors had created a website for those items they note as state specific. It would be much easier to have them break it down than to have to search through legal jargon on government websites that like to embed such items.
Learning a lot about all the things that go in to buying a home. I've gone from being excited to depressed and back to hopeful. It's a good read and the language makes the topic of mortgages not to densen and dull.
Mar 29, 2008 Sabine rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone buying a home.
Recommended to Sabine by: Self check out
Good balanced book on buying a home. There are a lot of things I did not consider and this book covered all the little extras that home buyers could as well as should expect. Well outlined, easy to follow, this was a good book and prepared me for what I hope will be coming soon, A new house!
Hom Sack
Jul 01, 2007 Hom Sack rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent! Somethings have changed since the last 18 to 34 years in the process of buying a house. It is good to be brought updated by this book. Next on the list to read is the sequel House Selling For Dummies, 3rd edition.
Feb 09, 2009 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reference
A great reference for first time home buyers. Tyson takes much of the fear out of the entire process, explaining all of the legal terms in simple layman's language. His Personal Finance for Dummies is also a great reference.
Apr 14, 2015 torque rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pretty much what I expected from this book. More than what I expected based on the other reviews. This is the second book by Eric Tyson I read, and I find his advice very useful. This book is clear and easy to understand. It's a quick read, but still covers a lot.
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