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Home Ownership
Buying and Selling Your Home

See Realtors for real estate listings and Rentals for rental information.

Selected Books

Becker, Norman
The Complete Book of Home Inspection
TH4817.5.B43 2011
Written for the home buyer, seller and owner, this book will help you evaluate a house and its construction.
Bray, Ilona M.
Nolo's Essential Guide to Buying Your First Home
HD1390.5.B734 2009
Get valuable tips on: deciding between a house, condo, co-op or townhouse; exploring your local market for the best value; creating and managing a realistic homebuying budget; qualifying for and securing financing; getting the right inspections and insurance; negotiating with sellers or new home builders; successfully closing the deal and includes all the legal forms you need.
Conner, Nancy
Buying a Home: The Missing Manual
HD1379.C5774 2010x
An O'Reilly manual with fill-in forms that help you: determine how much house you can afford; assemble a real estate team that's looking after your interests; understand the different ways to finance your house and which is best for you; create an attractive offer with the best chance of acceptance; learn what lenders look for so you can get your mortgage approved; inspect your new home to uncover potential problems; and prepare all the right paperwork for a smooth closing.
Crook, David
The Wall Street Journal Complete Home Owner's Guidebook: Make the Most of Your Biggest Asset in Any Market
HD1379.C76 2008
The days of real-estate mania—when you really couldn’t go wrong with buying a home, then selling it in a few years for a lot more than you paid for it—are over. Inflated prices and the “subprime” mortgage crisis have finally burst the bubble. Now, more than ever, it’s important for current and prospective home buyers to understand just what they’re getting into when they take that plunge—and to think smarter when it comes to making the most of their biggest asset.
Eaton, Joseph W.
The American Title Insurance Industry : How a Cartel Fleeces the American Consumer
HG9999.3.E18 2007
Joseph W. Eaton is a professor emeritus at the University of Pittsburgh. Title insurance in Pennsylvania is particularly high.
Hodges, Jane
Rent vs. Own: A Real Estate Reality Check for Navigating Booms, Busts, and Bad Advice
HD7287.8.H62 2012
Rent vs. Own does not assume that buying is always best. Expert finance and real estate reporter Jane Hodges explains how the housing market works and breaks down all the pros and cons of buying and renting.
Holmes, Mike
The Holmes Inspection: Everything You Need to Know Before You Buy or Sell Your Home
TH4817.5.H647 2012x
Mike Holmes of the Canadian HGTV show shows readers how to spot problems that could be expensive or catastrophic in a home with real case studies, "red flag" sidebars and hundreds of photographs.
Tyson, Eric (Eric Kevin)
Home Buying Kit for Dummies
HD255.T97 2012x
This revised edition includes a bonus CD with home buying forms; market analysis and comparable value worksheets; budget, tax, and mortgage calculators, checklists for selecting a real estate agent and home inspections.
Willis, Gerri
Home Rich: Increasing the value of the biggest investment of your life
HD259.W55 2008
Gerri Willis is the anchor of Open House, CNN's weekly half-hour real estate show, and divides her book into four sections: Buying, Maintaining, Upgrading, and Selling.

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Buying and Selling Your Home
(DVD) HD1379.B8863 2004x
The first program presents time- and money-saving tips for preparing a house for sale. The second program discusses how the prospective home-buyer can perform a comprehensive survey of the physical condition of a home so as to help uncover hidden problems.
Home Evaluation
(DVD) TH4817.5.H6624 2004x
Presents the basic procedures for examining, inspecting, and assessing a house. Shows how to: check the lot and drainage; examine the exterior of a house; inspect the attic; check heating and cooling systems.
Home Inspection Training 1: The Wood-Sided Rancher
(DVD) TH4817.5.H675 2006x
This step-by-step video will walk you through the inspection process. Whether you are an experienced home inspector or a new home inspector you will learn invaluable tips and trade techniques.
Home Inspection Training 2, The Masonry House
(DVD) TH4817.5.H676 2006x
This video teaches viewers about evaluating masonry walls, detecting spalling caused by rebar failure, inspecting air conditioners, grounds and landscaping, electric panel and systems, plumbing supply and distribution, plumbing fixtures, appliances, and more.

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Browse the Catalog

For library materials, browse the library catalog under the subjects:


Pittsburgh Region



  • Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency
    Provides capital for decent, safe and affordable homes and apartments for older adults, persons of modest means and those persons with special housing needs.

United States

  • Census Bureau: Housing Topics
    Information and data from the federal government about homeownership, housing affordability, housing vacancy, residential segregation, etc.
  • CNN Money: Best Places to Live in America
    Each year, Money Magazine reviews census data on 300 US cities compiled by the Fast Forward consulting firm and selects the best places to live, focusing on economy, education, culture, recreation and safety.
  • Ginnie Mae
    Ginnie Mae - The Government National Mortgage Association - helps more Americans buy their own homes by operating the Mortgage-Backed Securities (MBS) program that helps to ensure that mortgage funds are available throughout the United States including in rural and urban areas in which it has been harder to borrow money to buy a home.
  • HUD: Buying a Home
    Information from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development on Buying a Home, Finding Housing, Keeping Your Home, Building a Home, Buying Land, Making Home Improvements. Offers a checklist for homebuyers; lists HUD homes for sale.
  • Making Home Affordable
    Making Home Affordable is a key part of the Obama Administration's effort to help homeowners avoid foreclosure.
  • Motley Fool: Personal Finance: Buying a Home
    Tips on financing your home (what can you afford), finding the perfect home, making the deal, refinancing your home, how to maintain your home (home improvements, contractors).
  • National Association of Home Builders: Building, Buying, Owning & Remodeling a Home
    Yes, some people even build their own home!
  • New York Times: Mapping America: Every City, Every Block
    Although initially centered on New York City, you can input your zipcode to find out the racial makeup, income, home values (increase/decline), and education levels of any neighborhood.
  • USPS: MoversGuide
    On-Line Help for Movers before, during, and after the move from the US Postal Service. Includes information on vehicle and voter registration as well as changing your address.