Finding “The One”

Buyers look through listings online or those provided by realtors like they look through personal ads, looking for “The One”. The one that will look good when you arrive to meet it. The one that dear old mom or dad will like the most. The one that you have lived your entire life to find. The one that makes you feel like all of the planets in the solar system have aligned.

The chances of finding the exact right home from a listing picture, is about as good as finding the right person to settle down with when looking at a picture on a service. How often do people search endlessly, pick a few to check out, make the wrong decision, end up changing their mind when their needs aren’t fully met, resulting in an unhappy split? Oh, and I’m referring to their home buying decision.

There are all kinds of stories about women dating men (and vice versa) that are not perfect for them, with hopes of changing them. Unfortunately, the end of the story is that most of the time those efforts fail. Most homebuyers however, never understand that they might have overlooked their chance to find their McDreamy and McSteamy house, all rolled into one wonderful home. (Guaranteed mom and dad will approve). It might not be exactly what they are looking for as is, but the chance to make it perfect, is within their grasp.

One of the most popular loan programs available for purchasing and renovating any home is FHA’s 203K renovation loan. Notice I have emphasized “any”. The program has been promoted primarily as a renovation loan for people that want to fix-up the homes they live in. It also has had a lot of recent attention as a tool to purchase and fix the problems associated with foreclosed homes. Truth-be-known, if you can find a home in the desired location, you can turn it into exactly what you want. (a whole lot easier than changing the person you might be buying it with)

There are two types of FHA 203K loans. The first is a streamline edition. The streamline loan lets you make minor modifications up to $35,000. You cannot make structural changes, it’s designed for cosmetic alterations. You don’t have quite as much of a process with the streamline and it usually is faster to process. 

The consultant 203K is for the home in need of more extensive changes. Keep in mind, that the program allows for major re-construction. As long as certain structural elements of the existing home are left intact, changes are only limited by local building restrictions, FHA loan limitations, your individual borrowing capacity, or your imagination. Of course there are numerous factors to consider and you should find an expert to discuss the 203K loan program with.

If you’re willing to open your eyes, you may find that the homes you found to be undesirable, suddenly are exactly what you have been looking for. I can’t help you turn the person you are purchasing with into a perfect match, but I can help you to discover that the perfect home has been right in front of your eyes all along!

Call me at 301 788-8700, e-mail me at, or visit my website at to contact me or to arrange a time where we can discuss whether the FHA 203K loan is right for you.


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