4 Ways to Choose Your Forever Home
Last Updated on January 19, 2022 by Kravelv
Our home is our castle – a place where we can feel comfortable and safe. Many of us want to find a place where we can raise a family, make memories, and grow old. The ideal home needs to grow with us and tick all of the boxes on our list of needs and wants. The perfect candidate can be challenging to find. So, what should you look for in a forever home? Read on to get some ideas.
Close to the Action
As realtors often state it, it’s all about location, location, location. It is probably a mantra you should adopt, as where you live is one of the most important decisions you will have to make when choosing a forever home. Once you have made the decision of where you want to live, the rest will follow.
You should decide if you want to live in the countryside, suburbia or a city center. Do you want to be in the catchment area for high-performing schools or be within walking distance of your place of work or your favorite shops and restaurants? If you or a family member has a lifelong medical condition or plans on having lots of children, it is wise to find a property near a medical center and hospital.
Try to think about how future proof a property is. If there are areas of undeveloped land near a property you are interested in, check with the local planning department to see if the land is earmarked for regeneration. Will buildings affect the look and feel of the area? Will it affect traffic congestion? Will your property be overlooked by newly built homes? Does the house have plenty of social and recreational centers such as a park or sports center that your children can attend safely with their friends?
If you are young and wish to raise a family, it is often an excellent choice to opt for a home in a newly established neighborhood. Often when the community is in its infancy, it is easier to meet new friends and neighbors, and your children can grow up with all the other children nearby and forge life-long friendships. New builds such as homes for sale in Surprise, AZ, are a great option as they require minimal maintenance, and the utility bills are low because the home includes energy-efficient heating and appliances.
Every Inch Matters
A home you want to live in for a very long time should be the correct size. If you wish to raise a family, it should already have sufficient bedrooms for the amount of offspring you desire, or at least have enough land around it to build on an extension if required. Alternatively, find one with a large attic, basement space, or a garage that could be easily converted into a bedroom.
It is wise to write down a list of what you want and what you need. Decide how many bedrooms you want, whether you want a couple of family bathrooms or one bathroom and an en-suite. Do you want a utility/boot room? Would you like a kitchen diner, or would you prefer a separate formal dining room? Do you choose an open-plan bungalow or a three-story townhouse? Decide which rooms you use the most – would you love a large kitchen where the whole family can gather, or is a spacious family room top of your list?
Another thing to consider is the layout of the property. Would you like a master bedroom with a nursery beside it so you can be near to your baby? Would you like one side of the house to have rooms that could be converted into a bathroom and kitchen so you could create a granny flat or a separate wing for a cool teenage pad?
Another considerable factor dictating the forever home you buy is budget. Before you search for a property, you should formulate a budget and stick to it. Take into account the wages you and your partner (if you have one) earn. Figure out if you could still afford the home if your financial status changed – for example, if one of you became sick or pregnant and couldn’t work. Always ensure you can afford to buy and keep the home without overstretching your budget. If the house of your dreams is old and requires a high degree of renovation, be sure you have the funds – and a bit left over, to complete the tasks without breaking the bank. Also, is the house well built? Is it solid with good foundations and will endure many years of being lived in without becoming seriously dilapidated, despite being lovingly maintained?
Room For Improvement
As mentioned, you need plenty of cash in reserve when you buy an older home that needs some tender loving care. However, you also need plenty of time, dedication, and patience. If you undertake a massive renovation project, you will need plenty of stamina to be able to cope with all of the heavy physical work involved in knocking down walls, painting, stripping wallpaper, replacing bathroom and kitchen suites, and lots and lots of cleaning. There is no doubt that if you buy a fixer-upper and restore it to its former glory, you will increase its market value vastly. It is important to buy a home that is in a trouble-free location in the first instance if it is to keep its value. For example, a property built on a flood plain or beside a railway track might not be the best investment.
However, renovating is not a walk in the park and can place enormous stress on a relationship. If you fall in love with an old property, be wary of living in it while work is being done; otherwise, your marriage may not be happy ever after.
There is no wrong and right forever home, and it is unlikely you will find something that ticks every single one of your boxes. However, people often get ‘a feeling’ when they walk into a property that pulls on their heartstrings and makes them know that they have just walked into their forever home.