Shopping for a home isn’t the same as buying new clothes or even a car – it’s a major investment and can be an overwhelming process. According to the National Association of Realtors, the typical homebuyer searches for more than 10 weeks before finding the right house.
What should you be looking for though and how can it be done efficiently? Keep reading for five recommendations on finding your dream home.
Start Your Search Online
Rather than vising neighborhoods and driving around aimlessly, start by looking online for properties. This will give you a baseline of what you’re looking for, where, and how much houses within your criteria cost.
Also look at homes that you think you don’t want. Keep note of why you don’t like them so you can compare to homes that do appeal to you.
Location and Proximity
You’ve found a house that you love, but it’s an hour away from your office, or you have kids and the schools aren’t very good. It’s important to consider all of the outside factors like these when looking at houses, because you’ll have to make the decision on whether or not those factors make or break the house itself.
Think About Your Future
You know that your home is an investment and you’ll want to stay a while, so run some scenarios through your head. Are you planning on adopting a dog? A house with a small yard might not be ideal. Do you have elderly family members that like to visit often? A first floor guest bedroom might be necessary. All of these factors will play into your final decision.
Work with a Real Estate Agent
If you really don’t know where to get started or can’t narrow down your search, enlist the help of a real estate agent. It’ll cost money, but you’ll save time and energy. They’ll know how to find what you’re looking for as far as price, size, and neighborhood.
Flexibility is Key
While searching, it’s important to also be realistic and understand all of your criteria may not fit into one house. Focus on key factors and if a house feels right, it might be the one for you.