We often get ahead of ourselves when looking at a new home, and if it’s beautiful, has enough bedrooms and the price is right, we want to put pen to paper and make it our own. Rushing into such an important decision and failing to be thorough can be disastrous, though. Here is a list of five things for you to consider when looking at a prospective new home that may save you some heartache and worry down the road.
1. Look carefully at how the seller has maintained the home and determine whether any problems are problems you are willing to take on. Also get a disclosure statement of any existing problems of which you may not be aware. If you want to purchase the house, stipulate in the contract that the problems be rectified, or agree to fix it yourself for a reduction in the purchase price.
2. Think about your family’s needs and how the house might work for you. Open stairs to a basement might be impractical if you have toddlers, while an attic bedroom might be a good thing if you have a musical teenager. You want to have space that makes sense for
your family as well as your possessions.
3. Consider the neighborhood and any ordinances, landscaping regulations, etc, and how they fit with your lifestyle. If you hope to have a vegetable garden, a home on a golf course may not suit you, but a country cottage will.
4. Take a tour of the extended neighborhood. How long will it take you to get to a grocery store or pharmacy? Are there restaurants nearby? Are you in a food delivery area? What is the traffic like at various times?
5. If you have children, research the schools, child care and recreation opportunities in the area and also consider the safety of the area – both traffic safety and crime.
This list by no means covers all the issues that you need to consider when making this very important decision, but hopefully will help you start the process of honestly evaluating the property to make the best decision for your new home and for your family.