Whether you’re buying or building your new home there are many factors to consider outside of size, style, and price. To make sure your investment is something you will be happy about for a long time, look into some of these things that could be easily overlooked.
The Surrounding Area
The surrounding area of your home will be absolutely crucial to your lifestyle. Be sure to show keen attentiveness when it comes to what is around your home. Check in with the neighbors to see if it’s mostly a rental neighborhood or an owned neighborhood. Ask the neighbors if there’s an association. Often times when a neighborhood has an association there will be a close-knit community that has block parties and newsletters that circulate. With this sense of community your neighbors will likely watch out for your children and home. If you’re a more private person perhaps this isn’t the best area for you.
Similar to the surrounding area, you want to be sure the view from your home is one that you enjoy. Do some research to find out if there have been a lot of teardowns in the area or if any buildings are scheduled to go up. A new building may block light coming in from your home. If a building near you is torn down it may have you staring straight into a landfill you never knew was there.
It’s also important to consider where the property is in vicinity to things like an airport, fire station, police station, hospital or railroad track. This has the potential to turn your seemingly quiet neighborhood into an action packed, noisy city at night. A good trick to getting a handle on the neighborhood is to visit the property many different times throughout the day. This way you can see if it’s loud during rush hour, if the school children ruin a peaceful day at home alone or if police sirens are going off at all hours of the night.
Nuances about the property are features that you should be mindful of when building or buying a home. For instance, the property taxes may be more than you’re able to take on. When considering a property look at the taxes from the past few years. If the taxes seem reasonable, but have been increasing, it’s likely that soon they will be out of your price range. You should also check to see if the schools in your area are funded through property tax, because if they are you will likely be seeing much higher taxes in the years to come.
Another good measure to take when considering the property you’re about to purchase is checking in with City Hall. City Hall will be able to tell you the zoning of your property, any liens on the property, and any restrictions your property has. Here you can see your legal property lines and be fully aware of your space when building your home. Even if you’re buying a pre-existing home, it’s always good to understand your property lines and restrictions if you ever want to make additions. Even something as simple as a pool or fence may have restrictions you’re unaware of.
The Home Itself
The physical condition of your home should be carefully examined before purchase. Having a professional inspection is a great way to start the examination of your home. The inspector will be able to tell you any issues that they see and you will feel comfortable in knowing this information comes from a reputable source.
A quick quiz of the sellers will also help you learn about your home. If your new home has had any problems in the past it’s important to know about them—even if they’ve been fixed. You will find it helpful to know any issues the sellers had in the past so you can take preventative measures against them.
You will also want to take a second glance at the amenities that come with your home. Think about what it means to you to have to park on the street or in a detached garage. It may not seem like a big deal at the point of purchase, but if you live in a cold climate you may not like having to walk all that way to your car. On the opposite side, having nice amenities, like a pool may seem like a fun investment until you realize you can’t afford to maintain it.
Finally, when building or buying your home it may seem important to have a modern look to your home. Glass walls and high ceilings look wonderful, but they could cost you a fortune. Looking into the cost of utilities could make or break the style of home you want to live in. A home with many glass walls could cost you an arm and a leg in heating and cooling expenses.
There’s no two ways around it—your home is a big investment. In order to be sure it’s money well spent be sure your home is a place you will enjoy for a long time. It’s obviously important to consider the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, but remember how much more you should consider before making such an expensive decision.
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