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Tools & Resources

Tips, Tricks, & Tools to Home
Buying & Ownership

Keith Carothers Homes in Kempner, TX, is committed to walking you through every step of the home building and buying process. From the initial phone call and concept ideas to turning over the keys to your brand new home, your experience with us is certain to be a pleasant one.

In keeping up with our efforts to educate you on the process, we have provided the information below about the mortgage application process, home maintenance checklists, and moving tips!

Home Construction Financing - Keith Carothers Homes - Kempner, TX


Before you start home shopping, you should get preapproved for a loan, so you can focus solely on homes in the price range that you qualify for.

Mortgage Application Process

When you meet with the lender for your loan application interview, it’s important to bring all the proper information to ensure that your mortgage application will be processed as quickly as possible. The following list will give you an idea of the types of documents and information you should be prepared to provide.

Documents for Lender

  • New Home Purchase Agreement
  • Sales contract, if selling present home

Personal Data

  • Social Security number for each borrower
  • Date of birth of each borrower
  • Address of residence(s) for past 24 months
  • If self-employed or commissioned, Federal tax
  • return for the last two years
  • Divorce decree (if applicable)
  • Bankruptcy papers (if applicable)


  • Employment history of each borrower for a minimum of 24 months
  • Other permanent sources of income: Interest/dividends, pensions, disability, child support, or rental income

Credit History

Your ability to obtain a mortgage, to great extent, depends on the information contained in your credit report. So, it’s a good idea to get your credit report before you apply for a mortgage and correct any errors.


  • Deposit Accounts: checking, savings, credit union, IRAs, CDs, etc.
  • Name, address, zip code of each bank or credit union
  • Account number of each account & current balances
  • Outstanding Loan Accounts: furniture, auto, present mortgage, etc.
  • Name, address, zip code of each lender
  • Account number for each debt account, monthly payments, and current unpaid balances
  • Credit cards, monthly payments & current outstanding balances
  • Previous Credit References: name, address, zip code of each bank or lending institution, account number, highest credit, & date paid off


  • Cash value of life insurance & amount in force; monthly premiums paid
  • Household and personal property value
  • Auto(s) year, make and model; value
  • Other Assets: boats, motorcycles, jewelry, savings bonds, etc.


When you buy a car, you know and expect that you will need to maintain it to keep it operating properly. You add gas, change the oil, replace worn tires, wash it, and repair mechanical problems that may arise.

Well, the same holds true when you own your own home—it requires maintenance to keep it functioning properly. On the outside, there may be grass to mow, trees to trim, gutters to clean, windows to wash, and the roof to inspect for wear. Inside, you have flooring to clean, filters to replace, smoke detectors to check, etc.

A preventive home maintenance program will maintain your home’s value and save you money in the long run.

You may find it helps to use a maintenance checklist. Below we have included some checklists that you can either use as-is or customize to better fit your situation.


One Month Before Closing

  • When selecting a mover, check out their rating on the Better Business Bureau’s website and schedule your move.
  • Collect important papers and a list of important phone numbers you may need before everything is moved and unpacked
  • Now’s a great time to decide what to keep, what to give away, sell at a yard sale, or throw away
  • Begin packing items you won’t need for a while
  • Prepare a list of who you will need to notify of your new address
  • Contact new schools and arrange for the transfer of school records

Two Weeks Before Closing

  • Confirm your moving date and time with your moving company
  • Notify current utilities of disconnect/reconnect dates
  • Arrange for cancellation of newspaper deliveries and new subscriptions to your new address
  • Complete change of address at the Post Office
  • Notify businesses of your change of address (doctors, veterinarian, subscriptions, banks, insurance, etc.)
  • Arrange for someone to take care of your pets on moving day

One Week Before Closing

  • Pack items you will not need until after the move
  • Set aside items you will need on moving day, so they aren’t packed accidentally
  • Begin cleaning out the refrigerator

Moving Day

  • Gather items you will need to take with you and keep them handy
  • When the movers arrive, show them any items that will need special handling and supervise their placement of boxes and furniture
  • Make sure someone is at your new home to meet the movers
Still have questions about the home building or buying process?
Give us a call, and our experienced team will help in any way we can.

Keith Carothers Homes

3837 FM2808 Kempner, TX 76539