Resource Library for Homebuyers
Links to free resources. See also our Professionals’ Resource Library for additional links to other sites and useful research tips.
In matters of legal or financial importance, please verify any information you find on the internet.
US Department of Housing provides an in-depth guide to the process of buying and financing a home. How much can you afford? What type of loan should you get? Find out here.
Realtor.com has a large advice section with articles on buying, selling, financing, and moving.
Free Credit Report allows you to verify that all the information on your report is accurate and up to date. This site really is free. It will give you a report but not a credit score.
Mortgage Calculators calculate and compare different types of mortgages, accelerated payoff savings, total monthly real estate costs, VA loan costs.
Finding your Home:
Data Maps: New Hampshire Data Maps, Maine Data Maps. Use the site tools to navigate to your address, identify, draw, measure and print. Activate information layers. Many of the GIS tax maps have layers that may be activated to show utilities, zoning, etc.
Satellite views may be found on FlashEarth, Google Maps, New Hampshire Data Maps, Bing Maps, MapQuest, and Google Earth. Speed, magnification, image quality, season, tide and accuracy of location by street address all vary by provider. Use more than one site. Explore and use the tools on each site. For flyover tours, Google Earth is fast and fun. For an urban tour, navigate the street views on Google Maps.
U.S. Dept. of Education provides demographic information for all schools, public or private, and libraries nationwide. Compare school sizes, student-teacher ratios and more.
Maine Dept. of Education is a great site with links to many resources.
NH Dept. of Education provides local statistics and resources.
Maine Educational Assessments and New Hampshire Educational Assessments report by school and by grade, allowing you to compare how different schools in your town perform on the national achievement tests.
Look for the websites maintained by school districts and individual schools on your search engine.
Lastly, ask to visit the schools and talk to parents in your prospective neighborhood. Don’t be shy, this is important.
Researching your local area:
Maine Government Portal links to many Maine government sites.
New Hampshire Community Profiles, posted by NH Employment Security, contains fact sheets with detailed information for each town and each county.
US Census Bureau provides detailed census information for each community.
City-Data Search provides in-depth data and stats by city or town.
Public Records and Search Systems are directories of free public records databases. For best results, use these sites to find the database site you wish to search. Then narrow your scope by category, ending with the individual name. No need to purchase a search.
Buying and moving to your new home:
Use the mortgage, property tax, closing costs, and title insurance calculators in the sections below this one.
Home Closing 101 explains the home closing process, terminology, forms, etc.
Protect your move U.S. Department of Transportation site discusses how to find a reputable mover, understanding moving insurance and contracts and more.
Moving Checklist helps you organize and track details for your upcoming move.
Moving Checklist Apps for your smartphone. Free.
Mortgage & Tax Calculators.
Mortgage Calculator Plus may be used to calculate and compare many different types of mortgages.
Estimate Monthly Real Estate Costs with this calculator by inputting yearly property taxes (if the tax bill is for a ½ year, multiply by 2) and yearly insurance as well as mortgage amount, type and interest rate. Remember to add in monthly homeowners association dues under HOA Fees, if any. Use the extra payments tab if increasing the amount or frequency of mortgage payments:
Use this VA Loan Calculator to estimate monthly costs and the funding fee.
Use the sliders on the Mortgage Payoff Calculator to estimate and compare how much money would be saved by increasing the amount or frequency of mortgage payments. The report button brings up existing and accelerated payment schedules for the term of the loan, side by side. There is also a print option.
These links are for informational purposes only. Please verify all calculations with the lender.
Property Tax Calculator:
Enter the assessed value and the municipal tax rate into this Property Tax Calculator to estimate current and future property taxes. To enter the mill tax rate as a percentage, move the decimal point to the left one place. (Note that towns that bill bi-annually may list a tax rate on the bill that is for half the year and this rate should be multiplied by 2 for the full year’s rate.)
Most towns post their tax rates on their assessing, tax or home pages. The tax rate may appear on the property tax bill. (Note that towns that bill bi-annually may list a tax rate on the bill that is for half the year and this rate should be multiplied by 2 for the full year’s rate.) The tax rate/1,000 may be calculated by dividing the full year’s tax amount by the property’s assessed value and then multiplying by 1,000. Or lastly, contact the town to request the rate.
To estimate a property tax amount, multiply the net assessment by the tax rate, then divide by 1000.
This link is for informational purposes only. Please verify all calculations with the tax collector.