Here are some ideas on how to reduce your costs when buying a home.
Saving on your mortgage: In the long haul, your mortgage may cost you more than you're paying for the house. Be sure to check around and get at least 4 quotes from different lenders to make sure you are getting the best rate and terms.
Saving on title insurance and escrow fees: Many people don't seem to know
that title insurance and escrow fees vary from company to company. As a result,
they don't bother to shop around and simply use the company that their real
estate agent or mortgage lender suggests.
Inspect, Inspect, Inspect: When you buy a home you are probably making one of the biggest financial purchases and commitments of your life. Spend the money and time to hire inspectors and other experts to evaluate the major systems and potential problem areas of the home. Areas that you want to check include:
Inspection fees often pay for themselves. If you uncover problems that you weren't aware of, the inspection report gives you the information you need to go back and ask the property seller to fix the problems or reduce the purchase price of the property to compensate you for correcting the deficiencies yourself.
As with other professionals whose services you retain, interview a few inspection companies. Ask which systems they inspect and how detailed a report they will prepare for you. Ask for customer references. Ask for names and phone numbers of three people who used their services about six months ago.
Smart money management. Where do you have your down payment money stored? You should store it in a high yield savings account. This will give you immediate access to it, but still put your money to work while you are waiting for your closing date to finally arrive. I personally would recommend an account from ING DIRECT. With the highest interest rate savings account that I have been able to find, and quick easy access to your money.