Searching homes for sale can be exhausting, time consuming and confusing. But you can save time and reduce the headache of house hunting by determining what features you want before you search homes. Every one has a different opinion on the best home value, but using these guidelines can help you decided if a property is ideal for you.
Location: You know the region where you’d like to live, but have you researched the local communities? When searching for a home, make sure the local area matches your needs and wants. A good place to start is checking out the quality of schools as well as proximity, local markets, and other amenities you find important. A prime location and neighborhood can also help you receive maximum resale value or home equity.
Neighbors: It’s a good idea to make note of the proximity to others when searching homes for sale. How far away is the next house and do they have direct visibility into your home? If you’d like to retain your privacy, neighboring homes should be an ample distance apart or the property should have elements to maintain seclusion such as hedge walls.
Property size: Most house hunters will focus on the square footage of a house, but it’s important to check out the lot size as well when looking at homes for sale. Is the area around the home big enough for any out door activities or storage you may be interested in? You should also consider the maintenance required for lot up-keep such as mowing grass, weeding gardens or trimming vegetation.
House size: Take note of nearby homes when searching real estate for sale; they should be close in size and amenities. If a neighbor’s home is significantly smaller it could adversely affect the resale value of your home.
Kitchens: The kitchen is usually the most popular room in the house. When searching real estate for sale, take note of the kitchen size as well as the appliances as a larger kitchen with modern appliances are ideal for those who enjoy cooking and entertaining. Kitchens with islands provide extra counter space, additional storage and outlets. Space to eat-in the kitchen or a connection to the dining room offers convenience. Also check for easy access to the back yard if you like to entertain outdoors.
Bedrooms and bathrooms: House hunters are usually the most interested in three or four bedroom homes for sale. Also be sure to look for houses with two or more full bathrooms. The size of each bedroom should be large enough for a queen bed and one dresser with ample walking space.
Closets: Be sure to take note of the closet space. Many homes for sale offer walk-in closets in the master bedroom. You’ll want spacious closets in the rest of the house and ample storage for linens, towels and seasonal clothing.
Garages: Garage are an important factor to some house hunters, particularly for homes in the North. Homes that have an attached garage provide warm access during the cold season and enable you to save time and avoid the hassle of scraping snow or ice off your vehicle. Look for garage with attributes that fit your lifestyle, such as work bench, and also provide room for storage.
Pools: Pools are generally not considered a wise real estate investment. They require year-round maintenance and can be a danger to small children or animals. If you’re not prepared or do not have the resources to manage a pool, they can quickly become more hassle than the pleasure they offer.
Energy Costs: Make sure you can figure a energy cost estimate to run the house. Larger homes can be more expensive to heat and cool if the HVAC system is older or inefficient. Also look for homes which maximize solar orientation and have sufficient insulation to help keep your energy bill down.
Daniel Moshier, owner of Thermal Services, Inc. and Livingston’s Coolest House for Sale [http://www.coolesthouseforsale.com], has over 30 years of experience in HVAC and real estate.
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