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What To Look For In A Home And Neighborhood

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It can be daunting to search for a home. You want to feel confident that you will be happy with your purchase. The decision to buy a home is an individual one. Consider all aspects of the home and rank them according to your needs. Then, decide which elements are worth negotiating and which ones are not. 

1. What To Look For When Buying A Home   

Before you begin seriously looking at houses, it is important to determine what you can afford and where you want to live.

 The Size of a House 

Before you start looking for houses, you should have an idea of the size you need. This includes how many bedrooms and bathrooms you will need.

A larger home has many advantages, including the ability to accommodate your family members and guests. However, a smaller house also has its benefits. If you are just starting out, smaller houses can be easier and more affordable to furnish. These houses are also easier to clean and less expensive to maintain.

 The Ideal Yard 

Personal preference can also play a role in what type of yard you want. Are you looking for a large yard with beautiful landscaping and low maintenance? Do you want to be free from the responsibility of maintaining a large lawn? Perhaps you prefer a home that is further back from the road to give you more privacy.

Consider the size of your lot, maintenance requirements, cost, and features you want in both the front or back.

 Exterior of the House 

Do not let your enthusiasm for a beautiful interior distract you from the importance of a strong exterior. Harsh climates, either in a cold spot like Buffalo New York, or a hot spot like Miami Florida can all take a tole on the exterior of an existing home.

You will have to inspect the home before you buy a house with a damaged exterior. These are the most important exterior components to be aware of when looking at a house.

Roof: A new roof is an expensive investment. It can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000 and up.

Foundation: Foundation problems can lead to heartbreak and cost thousands to fix.

Exterior walls: Look for signs of disrepair or damage, such as peeling paint or cracks, or rotting wood.

 Bedrooms 

It is important to consider the size and number bedrooms. There are many other factors to consider, such as closet space, natural and artificial lighting, views from windows, privacy, and whether or not there is an attached bathroom to your primary bedroom.

 Bathrooms 

Make sure you check the bathroom before you leave. Flush the toilets, check the faucets, and turn on the shower. Make sure that the fan is working. Check under the sink and around your toilet for water damage and leaks.

Also, note the type of tub or shower in each bathroom. Is it a single shower or a combination of a bathtub and a shower? Is it equipped with glass doors or curtains? Is the bathtub made from porcelain or plastic Bathroom renovations can be expensive so make sure that you are either satisfied with your bathroom as it is or willing to spend more money.

 Heating and Cooling Systems 

You probably don’t have the expertise to evaluate the cooling and heating systems of your home unless you are an HVAC professional. You’ll need to answer some simple questions that affect your daily life.

Check the type of cooling and heating system your house has. There are many types of heating and cooling systems that can control your home’s temperature. Each system has its pros and cons.

Make sure the home is properly insulated.   Homes that have poor insulation typically have extremely high Con Ed energy bills. One way to find out is to ask previous owners to see their past energy bills.  A high bill is a sure sign of problems with the HVAC system.

Make sure you find a house with cooling and heating systems that you are happy with. If you don’t understand the requirements for a new system, it is worth looking into. The cost of installing a new system can be expensive. If you are switching from a ductless system, make sure there is enough room within your walls for it to fit.  Remember, if you live in an unregulated energy state like New York, you can chose from among several utility companies to find the rate and plan that fits you best, and maybe even keep power outages to a minimum.

 Garage 

A multi-car garage is a good option if you own more than one vehicle or intend to use it for other purposes. Take note of how much parking space is available in the lot, along with the length and width. Also consider street parking.

 

 2. Factors To Consider When Choosing A Neighborhood To Live In  

 

It’s important to consider the following things about the neighborhood after you have inspected the properties that interest you.

 Commute 

A lot of home buyers consider the distance from their work place to their new home. It may be a good idea to discuss commutes with your spouse or partner if you are buying a home together.

 Neighborhood Safety 

When you start to narrow down your search for a house, ensure that the area in which you are interested is safe. This is especially important if you have children or plan to have them. Check the crime rate in the area to make sure you and your family feel at home.

You can visit many neighborhoods to see Facebook groups and get a feel of the neighborhood. Spend some time exploring the area if you are serious. Take a stroll down the street. Take a look at local businesses to get a feel for the area.

 Local Public Schools 

You can tell a lot about the quality of the local public education system by looking at properties in the area. It doesn’t matter if you have school-aged kids, it is worth looking at the statistics of local schools before making a decision. A good school district can increase the value of your home, especially if you intend to sell it.

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