You know how much you can afford for a down payment. You’ve met with a mortgage lender to look at your financing options. Then comes the final step: making an offer on a home that you love! Here are some house-hunting tips to keep you on track, organized, and focused while you’re exploring your options.
1. Know what you want.
Before you even walk through the door, you should have a list of everything you want in a home, incorporating input from everyone who will live there. Settle on five must-haves and keep that list handy when you start to feel overwhelmed.
2. Take a first-impression walkthrough.
The first time you enter a home, do an initial walkthrough without dwelling on a specific room or feature. Take note of your first impressions and enjoy the opportunity to soak it all in. Once you have a gut feeling, it’s time to consult your priority list.
3. Think like an inspector.
Once you’ve done your first walkthrough, take another trip through the house. This time take notes and pay careful attention like an inspector.
4. Bring furniture measurements.
Don’t forget to measure your favorite furniture pieces that you plan to take with you to the new house. Making sure your giant sleigh bed fits into the master bedroom could be a deal breaker. Don’t burden yourself with the unnecessary cost of an entirely new furniture collection.
5. Take photos and video.
You’d be surprised how much you can forget the moment you walk out of a potential house. Ask the realtor if it’s possible to take photos or even a quick video tour so you can better remember what the house looks like.
6. Come back at another time of day.
If you decide you’d like another showing of the house, be sure to come back at a different time of day. Take note of the changes in the lighting and atmosphere. Each time you return, you’ll discover something new about the location.
Before you put in the offer, use these house-hunting tips to make sure you’ve found the one.