Tips from personal finance bloggers about managing the costs of buying and owning a home. By Cameron Huddleston, Former Online Editor July 23, 2014 My colleague Andrea Browne recently bought her first home and shared some great advice in a recent Starting Out column about the process. If you're thinking about buying your first home, follow the four steps she says that you need to take before starting your search to prepare yourself financially for the biggest purchase of your life. And I've rounded up more tips below from some of our favorite personal finance bloggers about home buying, mortgages and home ownership.SEE ALSO: What $300K Buys You Now 10 Tips Most First-Time Home Buyers Don't Consider [Five Cent Nickel] "It’s been exactly one year since my husband and I purchased our first home. As one might expect, we’ve learned a number of valuable lessons." Can You Trust The Mortgage Company You Found On The Web? The Best Online Mortgage Lenders Compared [Money Under 30] "We review the best online mortgage lenders so you know whom to trust and what to expect when you get mortgage quotes or apply for a home loan online." 6 Things That Drive Up the Cost of Your Mortgage [Credit.com] "Don’t be fooled by a lower-priced mortgage offer if your financial picture contains any of these key cost drivers." Advertisement HELOC Renaissance: The Surge in Home Equity Borrowing [LearnVest] "While it might be tempting to take on new debt in order to pay off old ones, there’s a hidden danger in doing so: Defaulting on a HELOC could carry far worse consequences than defaulting on a credit card or other type of loan." 5 Ways to Lower Your Housing Costs [MoneyNing] "If you’re in a situation where your housing costs are more than you can handle, here are five ways to bring them back down." 3 Home Additions That Will Raise Your Insurance Rates [Cash Money Life] "While no one expects an addition or a remodel to their house to be cheap (even if you do plan to do most of the labor yourself), there is one expense that many homeowners overlook when planning their new additions: insurance premiums."