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Best of 2012: 6 Apps Every Homebuyer Needs When Buying a House

December 25 2012

We're celebrating the end the year by counting down our 10 most engaging articles of 2012. This article, from HomeFinder.com, was posted in July and is #5 in our countdown. See #6 here.

homefinder consumerappsRegardless of how attentive your REALTOR® is, there are still many aspects of the home buying process that require you to take matters into your own hands. Aside from using online home searching tools for the initial search, there are a multitude of apps that will aid you in organizing your home search and help lessen the chaos buying a new home often brings. We've compiled the top six apps to help you navigate through the home buying process.

1.) Mortgage Calculator ProMortgage Calculator Pro – Within seconds, you can calculate your would-be monthly mortgage payment. This app lets you factor in insurance, property tax, and monthly fees such as the HOA costs, so you can determine the accurate monthly payment on your new potential home.

2.) Dictionary of Real Estate TermsDictionary of Real Estate Terms – Unless you eat, sleep and breathe real estate, it's nearly impossible to know what every real estate term means. The Dictionary of Real Estate Terms allows you to input words such as "abstraction approach," so your eyes can look a little less blank when it comes time for contracts, negotiations and closings.

3.) Around Me – A house is only as good as the neighborhood where it's located. The Around Me app lets you quickly find information on the location of the local necessities, by providing you with the distance to the nearest restaurants, pharmacies, movie theatres, hospitals, banks, etc.

4.) Wikihood – This app gives you full disclosure on what's really going on in the neighborhood you're considering as your new home. The app will automatically pull up the Wikipedia articles related to the geographic location of the phone to give you an inside look at schools, historical info, public transportation options.

5.) Walk ScoreWalk Score – This app is especially great for city dwellers. Walk Score tells you what parts of the neighborhood are most walkable and the walking directions to your desired location. It uses GPS, so you don't need to enter in any addresses. Walk Score rates each neighborhood up to 100, so the higher the score, the more walkable the neighborhood.

6.) HouzzHouzz – Once you've done the hard work of finding the house, now comes time for the fun part of decorating (well, this is subjective). The Houzz app for iPhone and iPad is a comprehensive source of design and decorating inspiration that includes over 350,000 original photos from design pros, the ability to sort by room, style and more, and the ability to save your favorite photos to your own idea books.

While these apps can't buy your house for you, they will help to eliminate much of the confusion that buyers often face. Have you used any apps that turned out to be a lifesaver when navigating through the home buying process? Share with us!

To view the original article, visit the HomeFinder.com blogHomeFinder.com blog.

Next! View article #4 in our countdown.