This program is designed to allow sorority member, family, friends and the communities we serve to be trained on three phases of Home Ownership. Information is available on any one or all three phases

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Additional Resources

Ask your lender for a HUD-1 Settlement Statement when you set the closing date. The statement lists the time and date of the closing as well as the final costs of the mortgage transaction. See an example of a HUD-1 Settlement Statement at the HUD Web site at


This is an important step – it marks the change from house hunting to homeownership. You've found your dream home, made an offer, and gone through closing. Now it's your home –- all you have to do is move in. Easy, right?

Not always. Use our tips, checklists, and worksheets to help you stay on track during your move.

The Moving Process

A major decision in your move is figuring out whether you want to use a professional mover or to do it yourself. Distance and budget are usually the biggest factors in determining which method is best for you.

Interstate (from one state to another) moves are federally regulated and priced according to a "tariff" (a fixed schedule of rates and charges), which looks at the total weight of your furniture and other items to be shipped and the distance to your new home. An intrastate move (a move within the borders of one state), is state-regulated and generally priced according to the amount of time and labor required.

Local moves (less than 50 miles) are typically the least expensive, with the costs increasing for intrastate and interstate moves.

Don't know if you're prepared to move yourself? Consider the following questions:

  • What is your moving budget?

  • How do you feel about packing?

  • Are you comfortable with lifting and moving heavy objects like your furniture?

  • How much driving are you willing to do?

  • Are you comfortable driving a truck or trailer?

Once you decide on the type of move, do some research:

  1. Ready to do it yourself? Read our advice before you start .

  2. Prefer to use a professional mover?

Do-It-Yourself Moving

Self-moves are typically cheaper than using professional movers. However, you should still be prepared to pay for a rental vehicle, equipment, supplies, and other costs like mileage and taxes. You may also have to provide a security deposit for a rental vehicle.

  • For Local Moves Truck rental companies usually charge by the hour or day, plus a fee for the number of miles driven.

  • For Intra- and Interstate Moves Greater Than 50 Miles Truck rental companies generally have one-way rates. These plans often have set mileage allowances and charge for extra miles. You may also have to pay for supplies such as furniture pads or hand trucks.

  • Don't put off packing! Start organizing and packing several weeks in advance to be ready on moving day. Take an inventory of your most important belongings , either before you move or as you pack. And be sure to identify where boxes go ("Kitchen," "Kareem's Room") and generally what they contain ("dishes," "toys"). This will help you find important items when you begin to unpack.

Make sure you get estimates from several rental companies. Find out what kind of insurance is available for you and your property. You should also check with your auto insurance company about coverage options. And be sure to keep all your receipts - a portion of your moving costs may be tax-deductible.

Using Professional Movers

If you've decided to use a professional mover, do your research. Shop around for the best value.

Ask family members, friends, neighbors, and coworkers for referrals. You can also get information from your real estate agent, the Internet, and newspapers and phone books. Check with your local Better Business Bureau or Chamber of Commerce to make sure the moving company is reputable. Don't be afraid to ask for references!

  • For Local Moves The cost is usually calculated on an hourly rate based on the size of the truck and number of crew members. A mileage charge may also apply.

  • For Intra- and Interstate Moves Most movers charge according to the weight of what you're moving and the distance. State or federal tariffs may also apply, as well as charges for stairs, truck-to-front door distance, etc.

  • Additional Charges Find out if there will be charges for packing/unpacking, dismantling or reassembling furniture, packing supplies, mileage, and other services.

  • Insurance Find out what kind of insurance protection is offered by the moving company. Also check your homeowner's or renter's insurance coverage.

Make sure you get written estimates from several companies. You may get a binding estimate, which specifies exactly how much your move will cost, or a non-binding estimate. And be sure to keep all your receipts - a portion of your moving costs may be tax-deductible.

Owning and Keeping a Home

There's nothing like the feeling of being a homeowner. But owning a home is an ongoing commitment - new issues and responsibilities can come up at any time.

  • Maintenance Part of homeownership is maintenance. Understand what you can expect in terms of annual maintenance and upkeep of your property.

  • Moving As a new homeowner, the first step you face is moving into your new home. By planning ahead, you'll eliminate a lot of last-minute challenges that many people face. In this section you can find useful information and worksheets to get those last minute details in order.

  • Remodeling At some point, you will probably think about remodeling or renovating, which can improve your enjoyment of your home as well as its value. Our remodeling section offers useful information about where and how to get started.

  • Refinancing Down the road, you may want to consider refinancing , which can lower the interest rate and monthly payment on your mortgage or allow you to take money out of your home's equity. Find out what you need to do to get a lower monthly payment or refinance to pay for other family needs.

  1. Protection Disasters happen and are out of your control. But there are things a homeowner can do to protect their home from natural disasters.
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