One of the most significant buying decisions in a person’s life is a home purchase. Your new home is where you’ll live for years to come, and there’s every reason to get it right. You want it to meet all your specs and needs for your current situation and as well, the coming years. Although you can sell your home and buy another one when the need arises, buying and selling homes is not as easy as it might seem.
The same goes for renting an apartment. There are many homes to let, but not all will suit your needs. One grave mistake you’ll make is buying or renting a home without critically checking whether it ticks all the boxes. It wouldn’t be nice living in a home, however beautiful it might be, that doesn’t bring you the convenience you later realize you require.
But what are these boxes your home or rented apartment needs to tick? What are the top things to look out for when buying or renting a home?
Distance to your place of work
For many people, distance to work can become a major inconvenience. If you have to pass through a route with terrible traffic conditions to your place of work, it means you’d most likely be leaving home very early (or risk arriving late) and returning home late into the night. This isn’t something you want to live with daily, especially when you have a family.
Distance should also be on your home buying checklist if you commute to your work since you’d have to spend money on transport daily. Even when the home feels like a great value, weigh the cost of commuting daily over the cost of the home.
If you can find another similar property closer to your workplace that’s of a higher price, it makes sense to go for it if the cost of transport due to a shorter distance is much less than the former. It’s also helpful for home buyers to get in touch with real estate agents to find their dream home within a specified location, especially when they (the buyer) can’t find the time to search by themselves. You can fill them in on the kind of property you need, its specifications, and they go looking for it.
Weigh things up. Your home purchase or rental is a long-term decision, so distance and daily cost of transportation can greatly impact your finances and lifestyle in the long run.
This is a no-brainer. When renting or buying a home, the cost is always one of the top things to consider. What is your budget? Does the cost of the home match its specs? Would you get great value for it?
Even when funds aren’t a major challenge to you, it isn’t wise to spend wastefully. So you have to critically check the property if it meets your needs and compare prices with other similar ones around.
Never go for just the first home you see. Even though you’d be circling back to it when you can’t find something better, don’t commit until you’ve compared it with others.
How much space do you need? Whether you intend to live alone or with someone else, you’d need a certain amount of space to ensure you’re comfortable in the property.
When you’re living alone, you can rent a one or two-bedroom apartment if you often have visitors staying over and you can afford it. But when buying, you must ensure you have spare rooms.
Also, rooms and compartments vary by size. A small kitchen wouldn’t make cooking your favorite dish a pleasant experience. You’d struggle for where to keep utensils, and organization becomes much more difficult.
Also, look at the bathroom, store, living room, lounge, and attic, among others, to see if there’s sufficient space for what you’re bringing in.
Number of occupants
One important item on a home buying checklist is the number of occupants. The same goes when you’re renting. How many people intend to live on the property? Do you have a family? Do you suppose you’d have a new child in the next few years? Then you want to get a place that has just enough rooms to take your present family size and one more, according to your lifestyle.
As a rule of thumb, a family should have a home with no less than three bedrooms: one for the parents, one for the boys, and one for the girls. When they grow up, they’ll also need privacy. If you’re buying a home and you have two kids of the opposite sex, then you should go for at least four bedrooms–one for both children and a guest room. Even when you later have a newborn, chances are one of your kids would have grown up and left the house.
For rentals, you can have as much as your family size without any vacant room. This is because you can choose to move out anytime if it no longer meets your needs.
For many homebuyers, the ability to update their home is a major concern. If you’d like to make a home extension, grow a lawn or external garden, or dig a pool, you need a property with sufficient space around its exterior.
But that’s not all.
You may also want to change some parts of its interior, such as the kitchen and bathroom, or customize them. Check to see the current state of the interior and if a home improvement would be possible.
As you must already know, home improvement is a great way to increase its resale value.
Landscape and curb appeal plays a significant part in the value and beauty of a home. That property you’ve been shown, how awesome is the surrounding? Is it a place you’d like to invite your friends too?
But it’s not only about aesthetics.
What kind of activities going on in the area? Is it close to a factory or a noisy spot? What about dust? These things can impede how much you enjoy being at home or relaxing outside your porch.
Hence, the condition of your surrounding is something to consider when buying or renting a home.
It would be best if you didn’t buy a home because it meets one criterion or it’s cheap. Before making your decision, look critically at space, surroundings, aesthetics, distance, and any other factor that would matter to you in the long run.