Even if you aren’t planning to buy a home in the near future, you may be considering doing so somewhere down the road (no pun intended). While real estate has been a good investment in the long term, there’s a new way of thinking about buying your next home. Here are some things you can’t ignore.
A home is not just an investment; it’s a place to live. Does the location fit your lifestyle? Buying a home is a “social statement”. When you buy a big home, you are making a statement to family, friends, and neighbors. Ask yourself how big of a “social statement” can you afford? If you have a steady job, matching your income with your mortgage payment and expenses is a good thing. But if you are an entrepreneur or work on commission, it pays to be more conservative.
Do you see yourself living there? Sit in the dining & living room. Imagine yourself and your family gathering in the kitchen. Picture YOUR furniture in the rooms.
Is there room for all of your stuff? Check out the closets, storage space, garages, basement or sheds—or will you have to hold a garage sale before you move?
How big is the yard? While it looks good on paper that the yard is huge, ask yourself if you really want to maintain it on a regular basis?
Will someone else like it? While this is going to be your home, and you might live there forever, at some point in time, you (or your family) will probably sell it.
Some of the things you can ignore? Paint, carpeting, and kitchen appliances. These are items that can be easily replaced. Unless you see major problems with the electrical, plumbing, heating or structure, rely on the home inspection to find the problems.
Happy house hunting!