Home Sweet Home: Looking for the Right Home, not just a House.

by Guest Author on October 2, 2014


Searching for a home can really illustrate the definition of a “love/hate” relationship. While it’s incredibly exciting to think about all the new possibilities a new home can allow for, it can also be daunting to think about the potential downside if you choose the wrong house for you and your family. Remember, looking for the right home is different than just looking for a house. Although a house may be perfect, it still might be a far cry from being the right home. Here we’ll cover a few tips to ensure your home buying experience lands you in a house that is more than just a house; rather, a house that you are proud to call home.

Know Your Needs

Sure this seems simple, but a very important first-step in the home-buying process is learning your bare-minimum requirements, so you find a home which at least meets them. Try putting together a top ten list: it can help you work with your real estate agent to find a home that has all, if not most, of the requirements you are looking for. For example: how many bedrooms do you need? Are you expecting more children potentially? Will you or your spouse need an office? Do you need a fenced-in backyard for your family’s pup? These are all things to consider before you even begin stepping foot inside a potential house.

You can go as far as outlining the amount of natural light the house has? Are the windows sufficient for what you want? If you work from home, this may be a biggie as you don’t want to feel like you are working in the dark all the time and it can help you avoid calling companies like Golden Windows Ltd just a few weeks later to after moving in to install new windows, French doors or other items to help with the flow of natural light throughout the house.

Recognize Your Surroundings

In this instance we’re referring to your surrounding area. If you have children, learn what school system your children will be zoned in. Are you in an area which is being developed? This could mean great restaurants and stores are coming your way…or your family-friendly neighborhood could become part of the downtown college student scene soon. This is the type of thing your real estate agent can really advise you on. They should know the area, what is coming and going and also be able to provide you with insight regarding traffic, schooling, demographics in the area and what you might be able to expect right now vs. five years from now. For some other tips on getting to know the area, here’s a great resource that can help you decide what to look for in a new neighborhood. Remember, researching your surroundings can help prepare you for not just the home you get now, but the neighborhood you could have five years in, and help you make a wiser decision for a short-term move, or a long-term stay!

If it’s Nice, Visit Twice!

When buying a new car, many researchers encourage you to visit after-hours to “kick the tires” without a pushy salesperson around to hassle you. The same might be smart to do for your potential new house. After you’ve checked out the home and done your online research, be sure to visit the home during different times of the day and week to see how the area changes. What might be a beautiful neighborhood on a Monday afternoon, could be poorly lit and rowdy on a Saturday night. Observing the area at different times gives you a much more authentic idea of what to expect and it’s always a great idea to give the house you are looking at a couple of looks at different times.

These are just a few important tips to follow when looking for the right home. Remember, do your homework and be up-front with your real estate agent with regards to your overall criteria…not just the perfect house. The legwork you do up-front will be worth it when you settle into your new home.

Article and insights provided by Brooke Chaplan.


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