There are millions of homes for sale across the country. How do you know which is the right one for you?
The key to getting just the right fit is to develop a wish list. From the lifestyle you want to live to the style of home that best fits your needs, a wish list is a great way for you and your real estate agent to be clear on your objectives.
1. Fixer-upper vs. Move-in ready
Many buyers look at homeownership as a way to make their mark on a property. They are confident in their renovating skills, or are eager to hone them. Part of the appeal may also be that many fixer-upper homes cost considerably less than comparables which are move-in ready. Be sure to sit down and consider what you want homeownership to mean for you.
Are you needing to be near public transportation, rail lines, and subways? Keep in mind that in larger metro areas, close proximity to transit can send prices sky high. You’ll also want to think about entertainment, restaurants, and night life. Is it important to be near the hustle and bustle, or away from it?
It’s no secret. The quality of various public and private schools range widely. Be sure to research school districts before starting your home search.
4. Architectural Style
Some people are drawn to the clean lines and light and bright spaces of a modern design, while others enjoy the cozy charm of a Victorian home. Leaf through magazines, do searches online, and read up in architectural books to decide on what style of home best fits your aesthetic.
Are you geared towards granite? Do you marvel at marble? There are certain upgrades that buyers covet. Make a list of what upgrades you would most like to see in your dream home. This can include professional-grade appliances, luxury tiles, or energy efficient upgrades.
6. Interior Styling
If you have allergies, wood or tile floors may be a better option over carpeting. And while replacing flooring isn’t a budget breaker for some, it can be for others. Interior stylings can be changed, but time and money are always a factor. By having in mind the type of interior you most desire, you can cut out homes that will be too much work.
7. Great Yard Expectations
For some buyers, the perfect yard is one that requires zero maintenance (hello, condo owners). For others, however, the ideal yard is large, private, and landscaped. Be sure to contemplate on what best fits your lifestyle.
8. Old vs. New
Old homes can carry a lot of charm, but they can also require hefty maintenance. New homes are not maintenance free, but they may come with certain warranties from the builder to protect you for a few years down the road.
9. To Garage or Not Garage
Do you want a detached or attached garage? Detached garages are perfect for homeowners who work on noisy or smelly projects. This way the house maintains a distance. Other buyers prefer to have a warm walk from the kitchen to their car each morning. What works best for your lifestyle?
10. Detached or Attached
Single-family detached, condo, or income property? There are many choices when it comes to homes. Condo owners love the ease and convenience of living in a community with extra amenities. Single-family dwellers love the privacy and space their homes provide. And income property owners love having a renter that helps pay part of their mortgage.
It’s important to remember that chances are you won’t get all of the items on your wish list, but having a solid list written out will help guide you in the right direction during the search for your dream home.
By Carla Hill
DISCLAIMER – PLEASE READ
The information contained in this article has been prepared by an independent third party and is distributed to consumers for educational purposes only. The information is not guaranteed to be accurate and does not represent the opinions of Guild Mortgage Company.
The above information is for educational purposes only. All information, loan programs and interest rates are subject to change without notice. All loans subject to underwriter approval. Terms and conditions apply. Always consult an accountant or tax advisor for full eligibility requirements on tax deduction. *By refinancing an existing loan, total finance charges may be higher over the life of the loan. *Information is for general illustrative purposes only. The information is believed to be reliable, but Guild Mortgage does not warrant its completeness, timeliness or accuracy. Guild Mortgage assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions in the information provided. *Typically, a non-purchase second mortgage. **Please consult your financial advisor on the consolidation of short term debt into long term debt.