Depending on your viewpoint, house hunting can be a fun activity or a pain in the behind. Looking for a house to live in is all about making sure that it is the right fit for you and your family. Don’t give in to an impulse buy because you might regret it later. After all, you will be living in this house for the foreseeable future.
When you go out to buy a house, there are many things to consider. You want to list your wants and your needs, and you want to know which factors you can compromise on and which factors are deal-breakers. You will also want to determine your budget and stick to it. Just because the bank has approved you for a certain loan amount does not mean that you need to find a house that costs that much. Sit down with the various members of your family and ask them for their opinions. After all, they will be living in this house too.
Here are five things to consider when house hunting.
Set your budget at the earliest possible time. Your budget should have a range, which includes your ideal price, as well as your ceiling price in the event that you find a house that you love but that is priced a little higher than you would like. Having a budget will help you to manage your expectations. Don’t waste your time and the realtor’s time by looking at houses that you cannot afford to buy. The wrong way to go about it is to look for your dream home and then find a way to be able to afford that. This will just lead to all sorts of problems. Instead, you should find a house that will fit your budget.
Do your research. Find out what kinds of homes are available within your price range. Know how to evaluate the fair market value of a home. You might be able to find some gems that have been undervalued, which will get you great value for your money.
2. Location, Location, Location
The old adage that location is everything is certainly true. You want to be able to buy a home in a good location. That means a location that it will fit your current lifestyle. Ideally you would position yourself in a great neighborhood where all the conveniences are present. The commute to and from work should also be manageable distance. If you have a young family, it should be in a good school district.
As part of considering the location, you should take a look at your neighbors and determine if this is a community where you want to live. Young professionals would want a hip and vibrant community while young families might enjoy a place where their kids can play with others.
You should buy a home that you like and that appeals to you. Don’t just buy it because it’s the cheapest place that you can find. The design should appeal to you and to the other people who will be living in that house. It should also be functional. You don’t buy a townhouse that has four floors if you have problems with navigating stairs. In this situation a bungalow would be a better choice.
Unless you will be furnishing from the ground up, you should also match your home with the current style that you would have. The furniture and decors should complement the architecture.
4. Utilities and Maintenance
When you go house hunting, you basically just look at the home. Go beyond the façade and take a closer look at the total cost of owning that particular home. If it is an older house, you might need to remodel. You should add the cost of that remodeling to the total price of the house. Also take particular note on how much you would have to spend for the upkeep of your home. Larger houses will naturally cost more. Having a yard and a pool will entail additional maintenance costs.
Another thing you should pay particular attention to is the cost of the utilities. The price of utilities can quickly eat up your monthly budget. Older homes may not be as energy efficient as newer ones, and they will often cost more to heat or cool. Your location will also determine the rates that you will pay. Houses in residential neighborhoods will be charged residential rates but condos in commercial areas or converted warehouses might be charged commercial rates.
5. Resale Value
When you buy a house, it is usually with the notion that you will be living in it forever. For some, that is true, but you never know what will happen years from now. You might eventually end up selling it because you want to buy something newer or own a house that is different in size. You might be relocating to another city. Your financial circumstances change.You can come up with many reasons why you might end up selling your house in the future.
Think of your house an investment. You want to be able to sell it for more than you paid for it. You have to future proof it so that it doesn’t lose its value. Buy a house that has a great resale value so that your investment is protected. This generally means a house that is attractive to different kinds of buyers.
When it comes to buying a home, there are so many factors to consider. What were some of the things that you considered when buying your home?