How to Buy a House in a Different State

June 16, 2022

Buying a house out of state? Follow these tips.

Whether you’re relocating for work, family, or just want a change of pace, moving to a new state is something so many people experience.

The process for buying a house out of state is similar to buying a house in your current state, but there are a few key tips to keep in mind.

Find a Loan Originator

Before you consider making a big move, it’s important to chat with an experienced loan originator – either in your current area or new location. Waterstone Mortgage has the ability to lend in 48 states, so many of our loan originators can do mortgages across state lines.

Working with a loan originator based in your new state may be the best course of action. They know the area and have established relationships with local real estate agents who know the area as well.

However, you might feel more comfortable working with a loan originator near your current location. If that’s the case, they may be able to assist, or at the very least, recommend a trusted loan originator in your new state. 

Either way, you have options! The bottom line is it’s important to work with a loan originator first and foremost.

Your loan originator will discuss things like loan program options, state-specific requirements, and getting pre-approved for your home loan. It's important to get pre-approved for a loan before you start looking for a home. This will help you figure out your budget and make the strongest offer possible when you find the right home.

They’ll also discuss the logistics of your move – things like changing banks, jobs, etc., and how that impacts your loan approval.

From there, your loan originator can recommend a Realtor to help you with the house hunting process.

Create a Plan

Your loan originator will help you create a financial plan for your new mortgage loan, but be sure to do your own research on your new home state.

Research things like the cost of living, potential neighborhoods, walkability, area attractions, and job opportunities (if you don’t already have a new job lined up).

You’ll also want to map out any expenses associated with the move, including:

  • Movers and/or moving supplies
  • Travel to and from your new state for visits before the move
  • New furniture and decor

Bonus tip: Avoid making any large purchases like furniture or appliances while you’re waiting for loan approval. Any out-of-the-ordinary expenses can impact your credit score, so be sure to discuss the timing of these purchases with your loan originator.

Take Advantage of Technology

Virtual Home Tours

The real estate market is fast paced, and houses can go off the market quickly. So, what happens if your Realtor sends you a listing, you fall in love with it, and you can’t travel to your new state to see it in person?

Many real estate agencies now offer virtual tours. This could mean walking through a home with your Realtor on Zoom or FaceTime, or the seller’s agent may already have prepared a video tour they can send you.

Be sure to ask your Realtor about your options for digital house hunting, and don’t be afraid to ask for as many photos and videos as possible. These days, many homebuyers purchase a home sight unseen or without having walked through it in-person, so your Realtor likely has resources available for this exact situation.


Homebuyers in select locations may be able to close on their mortgage loan completely virtually with our eClosing platform. First, you’ll eSign your documents. Then, you’ll attend a virtual closing appointment with a Remote Online Notary (RON). All that’s left is picking up your keys!

Digital Mortgage Platform

Many parts of the mortgage lending process have gone digital, so we created Element, an all-in-one digital mortgage tool to help make the process as seamless as possible. Within Element, you can:

  • Apply for a mortgage loan
  • Track the progress of your loan approval
  • Download pre-approval letters
  • Securely upload documentation
  • Electronically sign (eSign) documents

…and more.

A digital mortgage platform like Element is ideal for those moving to another state, as you can access everything right at your fingertips from any location, at any time.

Moving out of state is no easy feat, but with the right tools in place, it’s not as complex as it may seem. Find a loan originator in your area (or new area) to get started today.