Narrowing Down Your Home-Buying Options

Buying a home is a major commitment that includes more than structural research. You need to know about the neighborhood and city that the home resides within. Every piece to this puzzle contributes to your quality of life. In most cases, you’ll want to remain in this home for several years. Before you place a deposit on that perfect home, take a good look at all of the options available with the property. You might be surprised at both the advantages and drawbacks to the purchase.

Feel the Vibe

If you’ve lived in a particular city for many years, you may already know the neighborhoods very intimately. However, every block seems to have its own personality or vibe. Walk along the street where you want to purchase a home. Choose different times and days to perform this activity. A street with many children playing in their yards is preferable for most families. In contrast, questionable characters loitering in the neighborhood is a sign that you should look elsewhere for properties.

Neighborhood Amenities

Some of the newest communities being built have shared amenities. There might be a recreation center where weight rooms, pools and other perks are shared among the neighbors. Although the pool might be a communal type, this fact means that you aren’t required to maintain it on your own. The entire neighborhood contributes to its care. In contrast, these amenities may not be wanted by your family. You should look for another property if that’s the case.

HOA Fees

Most communities today have HOA or homeowner’s association fees. These monthly charges go into a shared account where it’s divided out to different property needs. There’s normally a reserve for exterior upkeep, such as landscaping and woodwork. Fees will also cover those recreational perks. As more amenities are added to a community, however, those fees will rise. Take these costs into consideration before you place a bid on a home.

Varying Property Sizes

A quaint cottage might be perfect for your needs today, but a growing family can quickly feel cramped in this space. New communities are often built with varying home sizes. One- to three-bedroom structures are usually available for sale. Consider your family’s current and future size. Ideally, you should buy a home that’s slightly larger than you need today. New babies, returning college students and aging parents might move in soon.

Proximity to Work

No one wants a long commute to work. You may find the perfect community for your family, but it’s located an hour away from your office. Try to pick a home that’s reasonably close to schools and employment. Ideally, take a test drive during rush hour to see the traveling distance. A home won’t be very attractive if you’re always on the road. A short commute time with a reasonable home price is your main goal during the bidding process.

Picture yourself in the here and now, and then imagine your life five years in the future. If a property won’t fit your needs within that time period, look for another home. Although you can certainly sell a home whenever you please, the investment is enhanced as you pay down the balance and watch the equity rise. You should have some wealth in the home before it’s sold to another bidder.