It's More Than a Fantasy: Here's How to Find Your Dream Home

Written by Posted On Monday, 08 April 2019 03:22

Are you on the quest to find your dream home? Here's how you can shorten the process and find your perfect home sooner rather than later.

Given that the average person moves 11 times in their life, many people in the search to find their dream home take a few stops. When you set out to find your dream home, it might not be the right time or you might have the money to get what you want. However, after your first or second home, you might be able to move into the one you're looking for.

Here are five things to look for in any search for a dream home.

1. Find Something In Your Style

Before you start looking at what's actually on the market, figure out what you like in a home. Everything from craftsmanship, era, and design can come into play. While many things can change, if you know what you like, you'll soon figure out what you don't like.

This can help you whittle things down.

While you might not have the budget for your dream home yet, you need to figure out what it is that will work for you, your family, and your future. You could be buying something that you'll sell later when you can afford to move into your dream home.

A single family home is great because you can have a lot of privacy and freedom. You can work on the interior at odd hours and perhaps not be heard by anyone outside the home. You can even have your own yard for your kids or pets to run around in.

If you would prefer a condo, you get a lot of benefits like having someone else take care of maintenance and knowing that it will get done. While you might put off some repairs, your condo association isn't allowed to.

The downside is that you'll have to run a lot of things past a condo association who might not agree with what you want to do with your own space.

2. Look At The Region

If you don't really care where you live, you could end up with a great deal in a remote state. You'll get more than 10 times the house you'd get in New York if you're willing to move to Idaho. The only problem is that you might not get as many visits from friends and family.

If you're trying to decide which part of your home city to live in, you need to look at what's going on in real estate trends. Neighborhoods that you used to avoid might have changed drastically and are now the hot neighborhoods to buy in. If there's walkability, lots of stuff to do around, and plenty of amenities, then all you have to do is figure out the budget.

Before you buy anywhere, make sure you spend a lot of time walking around. If you're moving to a rural area, you should drive around the region but also walk around. Get a feel for what it's like to really be in the area, what's around, and what you can expect during all hours of the day.

3. Look At Your Finances

Before you choose a home, you need to get real about how much you can actually afford. Look at your credit score, any outstanding debt, and what you could realistically offer as a down payment. While you can get a loan for your down payment, you're more likely to get a better interest rate on your mortgage if you can pay it in cash.

You can get pre-approved for financing before you start looking at homes. When you have proof to show of this, you can get sellers to agree to deal with you sooner than some other buyers may.

You'll need to get proof of income, including W2s and a few months worth of pay stubs. Also, tally how much you have in savings and cash to make sure that you have enough for any closing costs and fees that arise. Many buyers are blindsided by these extra costs when they're operating at the margins of affordability.

Make sure that you're going to stick to the 28/36 rule. In order to be able to truly afford your home on your income, you need to be spending less than 28% of your monthly income on your housing. Your total expenses, as far as debt goes, should not exceed 36% of your monthly income.

You won't have to worry about losing work or missing a paycheck if you're sticking to those rules.

4. Don't Get Snagged on Flaws

When you're first looking at a house, it's easy to want to see what you don't like about it. If it's not checking off everything on your list, you might want to move on to the next one. But no home that you look at is likely to be perfect on first sight.

If a home has a few things that you don't like, consider whether or not they can be changed. If the home is missing some essentials, calculate the cost of adding them in case this could still be a better deal than other homes on the market.

You might hear a lot of people talk about the "bones" of a home. That's a reference to the core structural elements of your home, including walls, door placement, windows, etc. The final layer of flooring, the color of the walls, or the finish on the cabinets can all be redone over a weekend, so don't let them trip you up.

To get a feel for what's out there, check out this website.

Find Your Dream Home Today

When you've been thinking that it's time to find your dream home, you shouldn't keep putting it off. If you don't start looking now, you might never find it.

If you need to sell your current home so that you can move into your dream home, check out our guide for tips.

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