Making a Must-Have List While House Shopping
Before home buyers even start house shopping, they should spend some time creating a home must-have list. Must-have features are the things that are essential to you. Wants are items that would be nice to have, but you and your family can live without them: for example, a swimming pool. It is easier to focus on the most critical qualities first because if you try to achieve all of your wants, your expectations will be unrealistic making it tough to find a home with everything.
The top five areas to investigate when making a home must-have list are:
1. Style of Home
The type of home you’d like usually depends on what stage of life you are in. Some families are just starting out, and they will need a single family home. Some older people may be looking to downsize and they are only interested in looking at condos located in senior communities.
The different types of homes are:
- Stick built single-family homes. These are not manufactured or mobile homes. They are made with wooden framing, which is why they are referred to as stick built.
- Manufactured, mobile, and modular homes definition varies from area to area. In general, it is referring to a house built in a factory then delivered to the site.
- Condos are residences where you own from the walls in. You may own areas of the land collectively with the other owners, or a corporation might own the property.
- Townhouses owners own the land, but they share the wall(s) with neighbors(s).
2. Features of The Home
Once you’ve narrowed down the style of home, think about the areas or features you will need to live.
- Yard or Acreage
- Square Footage
- Shop or Outbuildings
These are the most common areas to cover on a home must-have list.
A neighborhood might be the most important thing when you are home shopping. If you are unsure about an area, walk the streets at different times of day, night, weekdays, and weekends to get a feel for it. Talk to people that live there, and contact the local police station to see if there are issues that might be of concern. While you can always change things around your home, you can’t change where it’s located.
4. School District
Good school districts also add value to a property. To learn about how certain schools perform check out GreatSchools.org. The site rates schools and gives helpful tips on what parents should ask the schools, teachers, and principal when selecting a school.
5. Fixer Upper Or New
Ask yourself how much you are willing to tackle before house shopping even begins. If you want a move-in-ready house, let your real estate agent know. This way they will not waste your time showing you homes that need work. If you enjoy DIY projects, it may be a perfect situation to buy a house for a lower price that you are willing to invest more money and time into.
There are different degrees of renovations to consider.
- Paint and Floors. Structurally the property is in good shape, but it could use some superficial, cosmetic changes like flooring and paint.
- Rehab property. The structure of these homes may need some repairs. The appliances, electrical, or plumbing might be older, but the house can be fixed up with some work.
- Tear Down. A structure that sits on a beautiful lot or piece of land that you would like to own.
Taking the time to create a home must-have list will get you into your dream home faster while also making the house shopping experience less frustrating for you and your agent.
Once you have found the home you would like to purchase, hire a professional home inspector to perform a home inspection so that you have all the information you need to move through with the transaction. MyHome Inspection offers inspection services to Salt Lake, Utah, Sanpete, and Iron counties. Contact us to schedule an appointment!