The best defense against making avoidable mistakes is education. The more you know about something, the less likely you are to screw it up. So you’d think home buyers would want to learn as much as possible before heading out to find a house to purchase. After all, buying a house is major financial transaction and a serious commitment. And yet, surveys of potential home buyers consistently find that large majorities of them share in some common misconceptions about what it takes to buy a house and how the process should unfold. Recently, Fannie Mae’s Economic & Strategic Research Group interviewed real-estate agents, buyers, and loan officers in an effort to figure out why there isn’t more focus on homeownership education before buying. Not surprisingly, most of their answers boiled down to there not being enough time during the process to focus on education. But common misunderstandings about down payment requirements, financing options, and the added costs of homeownership can scare off buyers or lead them to make unwise financial decisions. That’s why it’s always important, as a buyer, to ask questions along the way. Though you may not have time for hitting the books, you can always lean on the expertise and knowledge of the professionals you hired to guide you along the way. More here.