Selling and buying a home might be one of the scariest events of your lifetime. Well, besides opening a tube of crescent rolls. (Seriously though, is there not a better way to ship those things?!) Anyway, before you begin, consider what factors make your home right for you.
Are you close to work and the things you enjoy doing? Does your community offer things of value to you? Here are some things to keep in mind when thinking about your home’s surroundings:
- Public transportation
- Highway proximity
- Parks and recreation
- Proximity to grocery stores and shopping centers
- Suburban vs. urban vs. country living environments
- Restaurants and night life
“The ‘right’ home is typically a place in which people spend a lot of time. People want to live close to where they work or hang out on a consistent basis,” says real estate agent Joe Delia.
Remember, your home is more than just a collection of nails, wood and metal. The environment and community around your potential home will absolutely contribute to its value.
This is huge when considering your current living situation. Are you single, married or do you plan on having children? Most people wouldn’t want to raise a family while residing in a one-bedroom ultra-modern loft space. (Granted, that cast-iron spiral staircase is totally awesome). Here are some questions to consider:
- How many bedrooms and bathrooms are ideal?
- Do you need a big backyard?
- Is there plenty of space and storage areas for family members?
- What’s the school district like?
Answering these questions will require a bit of research, but it will be more than worth it in the end!
Remember, if you do decide to move, get the house you can afford but also the one you want. Your current or future home should be a place you actually want to be in. Do you love it? You’ll spend the majority of your time in this dwelling, so go with your gut on this one. You’ll probably know “your” house just from being inside of it for a few moments. “Even if you spend a little more than you were budgeting, ultimately if it comes down to a few dollars a month, get the house you want to stay in because selling a house is much more expensive than what you spent above your budget,” explains Delia. Here are a few things to ponder when adding money into the mix:
- Do you have enough money to afford the mortgage, taxes and insurance, in addition to any other debts and responsibilities?
- Do you need to make significant improvements to get the home the way I want it?
- Will you be able to cover unexpected repairs?
- What’s common for utility bills in the area?
Money will more than likely be a huge deciding factor on many of these issues. Think about what works best for you now, and in the long run. No one wants to be selling off their precious Beanie Baby or Pog collections in order to scrape together gas money!
The Bottom Line
Everyone’s situation is a little different. It’s important to make a list of the things you need, the amenities you want and environment you will enjoy living in. Your real estate agent will also give you some great insight and help you find the right place to call home.
Your house is supposed to be a sanctuary and a bastion of sweatpants, not a place that makes you tear your hair out or you’re bummed to come home to. Whether you’re buying or staying, it’s important to be happy with your home situation. Keeping a few things in mind will go a long way to making sure your current or future home is right for you.
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