When it comes to any safety/crime related issues, it's always best to contact the local police department with all your questions, hear all there is to hear firsthand. If unfamiliar with the area(s) do revisit more than once and at different times of day, possibly chat with locals/neighbors. Real estate professionals are prohibited from steering, enticing a buyer to purchase/rent, or not, in specific neighborhoods.
I agree with the others. With mortgage money being so cheap today, it can be a wise choice to borrow for your house and keep your cash in the bank for retirement or a rainy day. With a mortgage, you will probably be able to deduct the interest on your taxes. A mortgage can possibly offer a little protection, too, if someone would happen to sue you for something.... more
If you don't mind living in a suburb or rural area, check out USDA Rural Development's direct and insurance loan programs. Both programs require 0 down payment, so you could use your savings for closing costs and/or repairs. There are income restrictions and a debt-to-income ratio. No PMI on either program, but a one-time guaranteed fee on the insured RD program that is deductible. Go to: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/LP_Subject_HousingAndCommunityAssistance.html and click on the tabs to the right side. The "Find Eligibility" tab works better with Firefox than Explorer. If you decide to buy a home through this program in Westmoreland County, please contact me: Virginia.Stump@remax.net.... more
You should find an agent who specializes in foreclosures and short sales. The agent can quickly and easily compile a list for you with out you needing to go to several different websites. If you have cash, you can also bid at foreclosure auctions, but this requires experience so that you don't get burnt.... more
You will need to contact a hud approved broker to get inside so you my as well hire one that is expereinced in reo and hud homes so thay can assist you even though you are paying cash. you can usually hire a buyer brioker at no cost to you, they get paid their commission from the fee advertsised in MLS by the listing agent and paid at closing. This way they can get the information for you and you will have someone assisting you through each step of the buying process. good luck with your purchase... more