I Want to Find a Home I’ll Love
There are many stories where people bought homes that they loved, and still love, but they have wishes or regrets. For instance, although I have loved my house for nearly 8 yrs., I wish that I would’ve bought a home that didn’t have the game room positioned right beside the master bedroom. (It can get a little noisey sometimes.) If I had to do it over again, might I do it differently? Maybe. (Want to know something funny? I thought I was going to type probably until I thought of the next thing I’m about to mention, which is…)
Many things change during the course of a family and lifetime. So many of us buy our first home right around the time of a new baby. At that time, you probably want that baby pretty close by. But do you want that little guy when he’s 12 right up against Mommy and Daddy’s private bedroom? Should your parents move in, would you want them to be right next door? So, would you prefer a Mother-In-Law plan? (A mother-in-law plan is one in which the master bedroom is separate from the other, secondary bedrooms. Or are you a person who is in a living situation where you would prefer a double master? Yes, they do exist. It’s good if you know the builders and or neighborhoods where they exist.
Single story? Two story? Master down? This is probably one of the first floor plan decisions that you are going to make. May I mention that not only is it a good idea to think about children, visitors, length of potential visits, age and health of the visitors, and your own personal age and health. (I was just approached by my neighbor, asking if I would be willing to sell his house, because his health is making it difficult to traverse the stairs. Of course, I said yes ;-), but I’ll be sorry to lose him as a neighbor, and very sorry for the reason.
Could you live with a one car garage, if it saved you money? Would you need a place to put your “stuff”? Or, must you have a three-car garage, because you do have a lot of stuff, or you a place to hang out, work out, or use your work bench? Do you need a shed? Is there space for it? Does the HOA allow it?
What else does the HOA allow, or not allow? Is there something extremely important you as a home-owner that might be prohibited by an HOA? I’ve known of buyers with a pet pig, and another who wanted to raise egg-laying hens. I have had several clients who are only interested in buying homes without HOA’s. They just don’t care to have the extra rules. Others, very much want the rules to uphold the neighborhood standards.
I also recommend you drive through the neighborhood, during the day, evening, and the weekend. What if your potential neighbor has wild parties with loud music? What about the commute? It may be easy going during non-rush hour traffic, but an entirely different story during those going to and coming home from work times.
I would encourage you to check out the schools and the crime at various websites, of which I’ve used many. (Everybody seems to have their own favorites) This I would do before even looking at the inside of the home, at least if you’re trying to use your time efficiently. No sense wasting your time going to look, if it’s not in a neighborhood, or location of your choice. Then, by all means look. The pictures might be taken by a professional photographer with professional lighting, and colored lenses that trick the eye or add an ambiance that really isn’t there, not to mention that they didn’t take the picture of the big cracks, etc. So much to consider. The knowledge and experience of a realtor is always helpful.