When it comes time to buy that first home you will be ready. $160,000 is a respectable sum, and 5-10 acres sounds great. A new mobile home is nice. It is like a new car. You know what happens when you drive it off the lot? When I graduated we looked at trailer houses. The salesman quickly corrected me, mobile homes. We did not buy a mobile home, but I did end up buying 3 houses in 2 years as we moved around the country.
The renowned financial advisor Dave Ramsey has some great thoughts on the subject of mobile homes. Here is a link to his thoughts. I suggest you consider the wisdom of his perspective, he calls it double dumb.
I am a real estate professional, not a financial professional. So my perspective is from the receiving end of financial advice, not the giving end. However I help clients every day with a wide range of different financial situations and I see the practical implications of what families deal with in making a decision about buying or selling a home. I always recommend financial experts, face to face when borrowing money.
If you would like specifics, go to http://www.Zip711.com and click the Trulia menu tab.
I interview prospective buyers and sellers on a regular basis. I would be glad to speak with you once you have spoken with a lender and have a letter of prequalification. If you would like a list of local lenders to consider, please contact me at Zip711.com.
Carolyn Grimsley, CRS, ABR
Certified Residential Specialist, Accredited Buyerâ€™s Representative
Licensed by Louisiana Real Estate Commission
Realty Executives SB
In Bossier, 4012 Benton Rd suite 110
In Shreveport, 8575 Fern Avenue Suite 105
Each company independently owned and operated
The good news is that, contrary to what you hear, you don't HAVE to have a 20% downpayment these days. FHA requires as little as 3.5% down which you seem to have already. Another option is a USDA Rural Development loan which is ideal for those with borderline credit. Contact a local lender who is well versed in this type of loan.
For both of these loans, the property itself must qualify. Mobile homes must be "demobilized" - at a minumum they require skirting, tie downs, and other specific items which remove the "mobility" aspect.
Your best bet is to talk to a local realtor who has experience with mobile homes IN YOUR MARKET. If you need a recommendation, I'll be glad to help you find a great buyer's agent, which costs you nothing!
As far as credit score, I often see approvals around the 640 range and up. It sounds like you don't have far to go! The FHA limit in NW Louisiana is 271k. When you get ready to do a little research on properties available, call me at 318-219-5229, or visit my website at http://www.RollinsHomeTeam.com. Thanks for the great question!