How to Find Your Dream Home
Most people dream of owning their own home and moving into a property that they can enjoy for many years to come. When you're ready to begin shopping around for the perfect house, there are several steps to take to make for a smooth process. Here are a few important tips to follow to find your dream home during your search.
Getting pre-approved for a home loan is necessary to ensure that you have the finances available to make an offer on a property. Sellers won't take your offer seriously if you haven't already been approved for a loan, which can cause you to lose out on the property to another buyer. Find a local bank or financial institution that will evaluate your information and can approve you for a 30-year loan.
Determine Your Budget
Knowing your budget will make it easier to narrow down your options when shopping around for a house in the local area. Multiply your household income by two or three and factor in any debt that you've accumulated, which includes outstanding credit card balances, child support, and auto loans.
Determining your budget will also require you to make a list of extra expenses that you'll acquire once you're a homeowner. Once you purchase a new property, you'll need to pay for the cost of landscaping, HOA fees, homeowner's insurance, property taxes, and utilities. Some homes with pools will increase your energy usage and can cost more to own or maintain.
Look at the Neighbourhood
One of the most common mistakes that many people make when finding a new home to buy is failing to look at the surrounding neighborhood. You may find your dream home, but you likely won't feel comfortable living there long-term if it's located in a bad part of town. Take a look at the other homes on the block to determine if they're maintained well or look updated. The yards should be mowed and healthy, which influences the curb appeal of each property. The quality of the surrounding homes will have an impact on the value of your home and can determine how much you enjoy living in the area.
Visit the neighborhood at different times of the day to look for people who are loitering on the streets or if it's noisier at night.
Check Out the Area
It's also necessary to calculate the distance of the home to your job to determine how much time you'll spend on the road. You may not want an hour commute to work each day even if it means living in a beautiful home. Many families may also want to consider the reputation of schools in the local area. Buyers who don't have children can still benefit by purchasing a home in a good school district because the property will increase in value over time and will be more in demand.
You may also want to be in proximity to nearby restaurants, shopping centers, banks, and hospitals. Your distance to your family members' and friends' homes is an additional consideration.
Make a List of Your Needs
Understanding your wants and needs ahead of time will narrow down your search and will make it easier to find a property that suits your lifestyle. Some buyers want a house that has a pool in the backyard whereas others need a home office where they can work. The list of requirements that you write down should be deal breakers to ensure that you only check out homes that have the features you need to avoid wasting time falling in love with properties that won't work long-term.