How To Prepare For Your Home Search

Home Buyer

How To Prepare For Your Home Search

Are you in the market for a new home? Buying a house can be a daunting task, but it’s also an exciting one. Before you sign on the dotted line, it’s important to take the time to tour potential homes. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for the property search!

Open House vs Private Tour 

There are a couple ways to see a property that’s on the market: attend an open house or schedule a private tour. 

An open house is available to the public and hosted by the listing agent who gives everyone the space to leisurely tour the property. They usually take place on weekends and do not require appointments. Private tours generally involve working with a buyer’s agent and is a great way to see a home in detail. This also allows you to take your time touring and asking the agent any questions without feeling rushed.

And in some cases, you might have the opportunity to do a virtual tour of the home. Since the pandemic, virtual tours have become more popular for its cutting edge technology and convenience. Many real estate agencies, including Real Estate 38, prioritize our clients’ safety and have permanently adopted virtual tours on all our listings. They are a great way to get a sense of a home or to revisit homes you’ve seen in person.

Know What You Can Afford

Before you start touring homes, you should have an idea of what you can afford. Make sure you are financially prepared for home ownership. This will help guide your home search and avoid getting your heart set on a home that’s out of your financial reach. Be sure to consult with your lender to determine your exact price range. 

Identify Your “Needs” vs “Wants”

Once you have a clearer picture of what you can afford, it’s time to figure out what your ideal home looks like by figuring out your needs vs wants. This will help you save time by ruling out the options that don’t fit, getting you on the same page as your partner, and acting quickly when the right home comes along. 

Begin by making a list of your absolute needs in a home. The biggest things to think about are space, location, and budget. Maybe you need a specific number of rooms to accommodate your family, work, or lifestyle. 

Examples of Needs:

  • Adequate square footage for comfortable living
  • Sufficient bedrooms & bathrooms for your family
  • Backyard for kids or pets
  • Proximity to school

Next, think about what you want—things you don’t need but are nice to have. If a home does not have these items, then it should not be a deal breaker. 

 Examples of Wants:

  • Pool & Jacuzzi
  • Specific carpeting or paint 
  • Hardwood floors, tile, or carpet
  • Skylights
  • Pretty views

Come With Questions

Lastly, if you’ve decided that a certain home is one that you are interested in seeing, write down all the questions about the property and take it with you on the tour. Have your Realtor answer these questions and if they don’t know the answer, they can always contact the listing agent for you. 

Final Notes

Every home ownership journey will look different. It can take anywhere from six weeks to six months to buy a home, or maybe even longer depending on the circumstances. Regardless of when you are buying a home, it’s always a good idea to start preparing early and consider speaking with a Realtor or lender to see what they recommend for your personal financial situation. Best of luck on your home search journey!


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