No matter where you are in the buying process- just researching, ready to look, ready to purchase, you are going to need to know what it is you are looking for. Searches many times evolve. But thinking about what you may want and knowing what you are initially starting with, helps significantly in the process and can reduce the amount of time you spend actively looking.
Initially, you begin looking online and driving by listings or through neighborhoods. That is a great first step. This however, is very different than physically walking through homes. Every home is different in design/structure and every person has different uses for the home.
Sit down and think about your use for the home and what it is you need for your life. Using the below sheet (there is a jpg and pdf printable), you may be able to identify some items to focus on.
I always tell my clients, you can change paint and flooring, you can do some remodeling with walls, however, you can’t change the location or the property lines. Adding rooms will require additions to be put on down the line as well.
As you are going through homes, you will begin to narrow it down. You will sometimes wish that you could take the kitchen from one home, the yard from a second home and the pool from a third home and then one day, it’ll click.
When agents are working for you searching for listings, we type in your parameters which gives us the results to share with you. The biggest ones are generally: Township(s), Bedrooms, Bathrooms, Garage, Basement, Budget. As I said, when you start going inside homes, you may realize that the 4 bedrooms your search started with, is too big or too small for your family. It’s a process. I try and keep it as stress free as possible 🙂