Is this house the one?
Remember that house you couldn’t imagine yourself living in—the one where you told your agent a person would have to be crazy to buy a place with a kitchen that small? Someone just made a full-priced offer on it. Turns out the buyer is single and almost always eats out.
Sure, that’s a hypothetical, but my point is that every buyer brings his own perspective and needs. The characteristics you desire in a home may be slightly—perhaps drastically— different from the next buyer. The good news is that there are homes out there with big kitchens and tiny ones, large yards and no yards, four sides brick, three sides stone and even all-glass walls.
But here’s where it gets tricky. Although homes come in all sizes and loca- tions with varying amenities and styles, most homebuyers must make tradeoffs. After all, the house with the perfect his-and-hers home office may also be on a steep lot that isn’t ideal for your kids. So, what do you do? Prioritize
You can start to narrow down your choices before you ever look at a house for sale. How? Give some thought to what you really want in a home. Start with the must-haves. For example, if you decide you have to live in a one-story home with at least three bed- rooms that’s in a certain school district, you can eliminate certain properties from consideration. (Must-not’s also go in this category, like if you will not consider buying a home with a pool).
Next, list the characteristics you would really like, but may not be deal-breakers in an otherwise fabulous home. Finally, write down things that would be nice if you can get them— perhaps a three-car garage or a backyard deck.
Once you’ve prioritized your goals, don’t ignore them. A spacious walk-in closet might tempt you to forget about the third bedroom you said you needed. Don’t let it unless you truly can be happy with two bedrooms. Likewise, don’t discount a home because it doesn’t have a feature from the bottom of your list. Understand the tradeoffs Unless you have unlimited financial resources, you likely will need to make a compromise or two. For instance, if you want a larger house but can’t afford one in the neighborhood of your choice, you will either have to choose a different neighborhood or a smaller home. Perhaps you feel more secure in a gated community but do not want to pay monthly homeowner-association fees. You have a choice to make. The key is to weigh these compromises and tradeoffs in the context of your overall objectives.
After you consider the pros and cons, you might decide to re-evaluate your list of priorities. However, don’t simply ignore your initial goals without consideration of how you will ultimately enjoy that particular home. Investigate
If you find a great home with one undesirable feature, do you reject it out of hand? That depends. If the item at the top of your list is a home that works well for someone with limited mobility, you won’t give further consideration to a