Size Of Home
Choosing the right size home is important, and we can help you find a floor plan that is best suited to your needs. As a first step we suggest that you put together a “wish list” of features that are important to you. Sort the features into categories of “must-haves”, those that are an added bonus, and things that you can live without.
Before starting your checklist ask yourself these questions:
- Are you downsizing?
- Do you want a large backyard or a low-maintenance patio?
- How many bedrooms do you need?
- Do you want a view?
- A single story or multi-level home?
- Do you want a pool?
- Are you looking for any special features?
It is also important to consider affordability. First, calculate your budget and a “stretch” budget you could consider. Then, determine the minimum square footage and number of bedrooms that will work for you. Finally, what type of architectural design do you have in mind; Craftsman, Mid-Century Modern, Mediterranean, Farmhouse, Beach Cottage, Contemporary?
The location of your home affects the overall quality of your daily life, and finding the right location is a primary consideration when searching for a new home. Many questions come to mind when evaluating a community. It is important to examine how your lifestyle needs fit within that area. For example, if you are an outdoor person, you might want to consider living near hiking trails, beaches, or bike paths. If you want to shorten your commute time, look at communities near your near your workplace. Analyze your choices and decide which appeals to you the most. Research facts and basic information about the different areas. There are online sources that provide crime statistics and information regarding the safety of a given area.
Ask yourself what you are looking for in a location:
- Are you looking for a lifestyle change?
- Do you want a different climate?
- Are you looking to live close to a highway?
- How far from work do you want to be?
- Do you want a house in the hills or near the beach?
- Are there certain stores you need to live close to?
- What type of school do your children need?
- Do you want a gated community?
- How much can you afford?
Knowing where to look is important! Finding the right neighborhood can be the most difficult part of searching for a home. Feel confident knowing that your agent is here to help. They will work with you to gain a thorough understanding of your personal goals, your home “wish list”, and lifestyle requirements. They can assist you with collecting information on prospective neighborhoods by considering the following types of questions. Do you want a family-oriented area? Are you looking for a walkable neighborhood? Is it important to have schools and parks nearby? Your experienced real estate agent can help you research the important aspects of a given community or neighborhood to ensure that it is a good fit for you. Together you and your agent can build a list of neighborhoods that meet your needs, and then the search can begin!
It is important to note that the cost of homeownership goes beyond your monthly mortgage payment.
The following items are additional costs that may apply in your situation:
- Homeowner Association (HOA) Fees (when buying a home in a managed community)
- Insurance against natural disasters (earthquakes, wildfires, and mudslides)
- Homeowners insurance
- Property Taxes
- Utility costs (garbage disposal, water, energy)
- Maintenance and repairs
- Landscape maintenance
Helping you find a home and neighborhood that will fit your lifestyle is our number one priority. It is important to communicate to your agent the qualities you are looking for in a home and the surrounding area. As a first step in the home search process, we suggest creating a wish list of the features that you would like to have in your new home. Think about the features that are “must-haves”, nice to have, and things that you can live without. While you are making this list, consider some of the following questions:
- Are you an active person? Consider looking for a community that will support your healthy lifestyle.
- Are you a family with children? Identify homes close to parks and great schools.
- Are you a college student? Search for areas close to your school and local retail stores.
- Do you enjoy being social? Look for an area close to neighborhoods offering a variety of dining and entertainment options.
You get the idea! This is a big decision and it is important to put the time in up front to consider what you want. It is key to communicate your wants and needs to your agent so they can help you find the perfect match! Compare and contrast each home being presented to you, and eliminate the ones that don’t meet your requirements.
Finding an agent can be a stressful process when buying a home. You want to select the agent that fits your requirements and will assist you with attaining your personal and financial goals. At the end of the day you will come to rely on your agent 24/7. The process of buying a home can be as easy as you and your agent can make it. What you should know when finding the right agent is the difference between Realtor and Real Estate Agent. A Realtor is a member of the National Association of Realtors and can operate as real estate agents. On the other hand, a Real Estate agent is only licensed to buy and sell someone’s home. Regardless of what type of agent you choose to hire, these are the requirements you should look for.
- Schedule availability (will they be committed full time or part time)
- Commission fees
- Compatible qualities
- Past and Current Agent listings
It is always a good idea to set appointments with potential agents to meet with them and ask them a few questions you think are meaningful to establish this professional relationship.
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