MAKE A SHOPPING LIST
Deciding on a price range is a good start for any home search, but evaluating your wants and needs in advance is the key to a shorter and more productive search. A realistic idea of which features you absolutely must have and the ones you can live without will help you compare homes and choose the one best suited to you and your family.
Make a three-part list (“The List”):
- one part for features you can’t live without – the essentials
- one for the useful extras – the could haves
- one for the luxuries – the wants
Essentials should include the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the size of home and yard.
Have everyone in your family make “The List” and then combine everyone’s needs and wants into a Master List that represents your ideal family home. This will help you practice the art of compromise – essential in any hunt, and eventually in the negotiation of a deal, of your future home.
Once you have developed your master copy of “The List”, you have a great deal to share with your REALTOR® to make your home search easier. It will help you compare one house against another and can be helpful in refreshing your memory at a later date. It can also help you keep perspective while shopping. A flashy fireplace or lighting fixture in a particular home may give that added appeal until your list reminds you it lacks a second bathroom that you can’t do without.