Questions from a first time home buyer (10 pts)?

I’m looking to buy a condo in Las Vegas and move in pretty much immediately after I get out school in April. I know next to nothing about how to buy a home.

1. Location difficulties
I’m currently in Pennsylvania. Is it possible to buy a home without being physically present? I feel like I can get a pretty good idea of the units from posted photos. Are there people who I can hire to verify the integrity of the home and make sure that it matches the online description?

2. Timeframe
When should I start my search? Again, I’m graduating in late April. When should my house be purchased if I’m looking to move in immediately after I graduate?

3. Paying upfront
I’ve made enough to purchase what I’m looking for on my own. I want to pay everything upfront to eliminate the costs associated with loans/mortgages. Is this a good idea? Also, I’d imagine that I could use this to leverage the price?

4. What are other associated costs of purchasing a house?
In addition to the list price, what are the other major costs and about how much are they?

5. Any tips on how to go about doing this if you were me?

Thanks a lot for your help.

I have a somewhat complicated situation and would appreciate some serious, educated advice: My husband and I live in Las Vegas, NV in a home that has significantly depreciated since we bought it 4 years ago. We paid $ 570,000, and it’s now appraised at approx. $ 270,000 due to our lovely economy! We still owe $ 460,000, and we have an interest only loan that is coming to the end of the 5 year arm in a couple of months, so our mortgage is going to increase significantly! My husband also has a rental home that is worth what he owes on it. (We were just married, and all debts, etc. are in his name only) My husband is in the process of being sued for over $ 400,000 due to medical equipment that he leased for a Dr. he employed that has skipped town. He must therefore file for BK to avoid paying $ 400,000 for equipment he cannot use. My husband believes that our only option is to let our home go to the bank (ASC) and move into the rental home, but, we do not want to leave our current home! What are our options? Will a BK court allow us to restructure our current mortgage for the amount the home is now appraised? We haven’t missed a payment, and the bank won’t allow us to refinance now. And we’re afraid that if we stop paying on our current mortgage in order to get the bank to work with us, let the rental home go back to the bank, and file BK, that no bank will allow us to refinance/restructure because our credit will be destroyed, and then we won’t have any home at all! Please help! Thank you

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