If 2020 has taught us anything, it is that having a comfortable place to call home is essential. Indeed for many people, this has meant furious DYing and updating during the various lockdowns we have endured. For others, it has resulted in the slow realization that we are perhaps not in the ideal property for our family and that we would like to find somewhere that fits our need better, a ‘dream home,’ so to speak. Now, this may sound like a tall order, but there are many factors you can consider to make located your dream home that bit more likely. Keep reading to find out what they are.
Before we get into working out the things you and your family need and want from a new property, it’s a smart idea to consider your budget. After all, it’s effortless to get carried away and write all sorts of things on your want list, from indoor swimming pools to outdoor kitchens. However, if there is no snowflake’s chance in hell that you can afford a home that includes such things, you are just wasting your time.
Indeed, beginning your house search process by setting lots of unattainable goals is a terrible idea, as every property you look at will fail to match up with the notion of your ‘dream’ home in your head.
Instead, if you begin with the budget you can afford, you will develop a much more realistic vision of your dream home, one that is attainable and for which you can begin your search in earnest. The good news is that it’s pretty easy to work out how much you can comfortably afford to pay for your mortgage. You can even use online tools to calculate mortgage payment you can afford. The latter being something that will save you a whole lot of confusing working out.
Remember, too, when it comes to deciding how much of a mortgage you will be comfortable with, going with the maximum amount that the bank is offering, you may not always be the wisest move. Instead, it would be best to consider how much you can pay out every month while still providing a comfortable living standard for you and your family. After all, it can be effortless to get carried away when you see a property you like, but if you don’t have any spare money for fun, nights out, or decor items, life in your new home can get tough quickly.
Needs and wants
Once you have a clear idea of the budget you have available for your new home, it is smart to list what you want and need from a property. Your needs list should cover the things that you do not want to compromise on, while your wants list will be things that would be nice to have but aren’t a deal-breaker.
Of course, needs and wants will be different for each family. For example, one family of five may cite four bedrooms as a need, as for them, everyone must have their own space. However, a different family of five may be more concerned about having a large garden for the kids to play in and are happy for two or more of their children to share a room as they grow up.
The good news is that to help you with this task, you can look through the rest of this post, as there you will find most of the factors that families consider when looking for a new property.
When it comes to searching for a property, the value of the location you choose is well known. Indeed it can be the factor that has the most significant impact on the price of the home you desire.
When it comes to location, it’s essential to consider several factors. The first of these is the neighborhood in which the home is located. You can tell quite a lot about this by looking at visual clues, such as how well the other properties are maintained and how clean and well kept the streets themselves are. Also, concerning the people who live around you, going online, and checking local Facebook groups and neighborhood review sites can be very helpful.
Another location aspect that you will want to consider is the available facilities in the surrounding area. For families, the most significant of these is usually the schools in the surrounding areas and parks, shops, and other facilities such as leisure centers.
Additionally, transport links can also be a vital aspect of conversation when it comes to location. Therefore if your family relies on public transport, be sure to check how close the locale train station and bus stops are. Alternatively, if you have to drive to work, you may want to look for somewhere close to the motorways.
A 6 bedroom home may technically have the square footage you need.
Make sure you also consider how your family could change in the future. If this is going to be your forever home, will you still love it if your kids move on? Will it be enough for you if a parent moves in with you and you become their personal welfare deputy? Making sure you have the right sized home for future considerations and that you can make alterations as you go is important. However, if it is built in a closed off style with many smaller self contained rooms it is unlikely to offer you the required space.
Outside as well as inside space
For many families having a garden and other outside space is one of the motivations for moving in the first place. Indeed a sizable and well-maintained garden area can add value to a property.
However, it is essential to remember that homes with extensive gardens or ones that are harder to maintain, such as land that hasn’t been landscaped, can be challenging. Of course, the advantage here is that if you find such a property and are willing to take it on, you can usually negotiate a lower asking price.
Another aspect relating to outside space is whether there is room to park your family vehicles. Indeed, if you pick a home where you have to park on the road and then climb a steep set of steps, remember that it can get tiresome very fast. With that in mind, choosing a property with an ample driveway is the smartest bet. Also, be sure to see whether the curb is lowered as if it isn’t, your vehicle can get easily damaged.
Size, space, and future flexibility
Many people think that the size of the home is something that should be considered first of all. However, it is often a much more complicated situation than a matter of square footage.
Instead, when it comes to size, you must consider whether there is enough space for each family member and whether the area is conducive to how you want to live. For example, if you have a larger family and enjoy open plan living, a six-bedroom home may technically have the square footage you need. However, if it is built in a closed-off style with many smaller self-contained rooms, it is unlikely to offer you the required space.
Of course, there is no need to rule such property out altogether, as walls can be knocked through, and changes can be made. Indeed, this point leads us to the concept of future flexibility. That is whether the property you choose is flexible enough to serve your family through the different seasons of their lives.
For example, a flexible home may have a space that can be converted or renovated for a later stage in your family’s development. This may be that it has room for something like a self-contained living area to give a teenager more independence as they grow, or that it could be used to house an older grandparent when they need additional support?
There are many factors to consider when it comes to buying your family’s dream home. Indeed, ‘dream’ is perhaps not the best term to use here because it is more about finding a property that is ideal for your life as you live it now, in a realistic sense, and as it could be in the future.
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