Choosing the right house to buy amid a myriad options can be tough because it’s a decision you’re going to have to live with for years to come. Looking through all of the house listings for sale can be overwhelming. Here are a few planning tips to help you get into the right mindset to choose the right house.
Figure out your priorities
Having a clear set of priorities will prevent you from being overwhelmed by the choices that await you. Why are you buying this house? Do you need more space because you plan on starting a new family, or are you looking for a quicker commute to work? Do you want a quiet neighborhood to live in, or are you in the market to invest in an up-and-coming area?
Figure out your non-negotiables, whether it’s a bigger space, proximity to a good school district, or a fast commute. A clear idea of your priorities and your budget makes it easier for you and your agent to zero in on the neighborhoods and properties that fit your needs.
Plan your budget and stick to it
Getting a home loan is no joke, so determine how much house you want, what you’re willing to spend for it, and begin saving for the down payment. Don’t forget that you will still need to budget for renovations, maintenance, and moving. Budget conservatively so that unforeseen expenses won’t catch you flat-footed.
Weigh the pros and cons of an older vs. newer home
Older properties will tend to require higher maintenance and may have hidden problems. On the other hand, an older property is more likely to be in a well-established neighborhood.
Newer houses are more likely to have modern amenities and utilities, and tend to require less work, stress, and money to get into shape. However, they may lie outside a highly rated school district or require longer drive times to get to work or access urban conveniences.
Regardless of age, if a home checks all your boxes, don’t forget to request an in-person showing or a virtual tour. Then, consult closely with your agent if you intend to make an offer.
Know what you can compromise on
Just as important as locking in your priorities is knowing your wiggle room. While you may hanker for the perfect house, it’s hard to come by, especially in a sellers’ market. You might have to compromise on size, location, amenities, and more. Keep your non-negotiables in mind, but be prepared to be flexible.
Trust your instincts
There are a lot of things to think about, especially if you come across two houses that ticks all the boxes in your checklist, budget included. After consulting with your agent and weighing all the pros and cons, don’t forget to trust your instincts. All things being equal, the home you’ll be happy with boils down to what your heart – or gut – tells you.
When you inspect a listing, pay attention to how you feel when you walk through the house. If you can imagine yourself living in the house, seeing your family lounging in the living room, prepping a holiday meal in the kitchen, and raising a family there, then congratulations, you’ve probably found the home that was meant for you alone.
Coldwell Banker Cascade Real Estate has a team of expert real estate agents who are sensitive to our client’s needs and intimately familiar with the Wenatchee, Leavenworth, and Cashmere areas. Call us at 509.888.8887 or at info(at)cbcascade(dotted)com for more information on how we can help you find your first or next home.