Buying Your Next Home

Buying a home is an exciting time. There is nothing like the experience you feel when you walk into a property and can envision it becoming your home. A place where your family can grow, a place that you can make into your own oasis, and a place where you will create a lifetime of memories.

It is my job and pleasure to help you to turn that dream of owning a home into a reality. Over the years I have helped numerous families buy a home and wanted to share my experience with you. I have added some tips I have learned over the years for the various stages of the home buying process. I hope it helps you and if you have any additional questions please make sure to reach out to me and I would be happy to help.

Photo of a suburbon home and clear blue skies.
Explore Neighborhoods

For many the first step in the home buying process is to get a general idea of where you are going to live. This is a different choice for everyone as we all have unique lifestyles and pastimes, but here are some things you should keep in mind as you research different neighborhoods:

  • Make a list... The first thing I advise is to start a list of things that you are looking for in a neighborhood. Unless we have an unlimited budget there are going to be compromises so I usually advise people to categorize by must-haves, nice-to-haves, and don’t want. This will get you on track to start profiling neighborhoods that fit your criteria.
  • Get suggestions... Now that you have your profile set up. It is time to ask some questions. Talk to friends, family, co-workers, and real estate agents to see if they know of neighborhoods that fit your criteria.
  • Get Familiar... With some suggestions in hand, it is time to research the neighborhood. Once more people will be able to tell you their experiences, so talk to people to get answers. Also, you will want to head online to find out about the schools, surrounding environments, crime rate, businesses, and what people who live there say about the community.
  • Drive through the Neighborhood... No amount of online research is going to be the same as driving the streets and seeing what it is like. It is likely that by now you have narrowed it down to a couple of neighborhoods. My suggestion is that you take a day and spend it in that neighborhood. Drive by the schools, eat at a local restaurant, walk into the local grocery market, and walk through some of the residential areas. This should allow you to pick up the pulse of the neighborhood, meet some of your potential neighbors, and help to visualize what living there would be like.
  • Investigate the Schools... If you plan to have a family, looking at the schools is a must. Do some online research to see what other parents say about the school and also check out the statewide scores. Many schools have open houses or tour dates where you can view the inside of the school and meet with the teachers and the principal. So see if that is an option. Speaking of schools, my Home Search will allow you to search by school districts so you can see homes that are in specific school and district attendance zones.
  • Test the Work Commute... If you are not working from home, then be sure to test out the commute to work at least one time. It is one thing to put in the time and the route on Google Maps, it is another to sit through the commute. This will give you an idea of what your mornings might be like.

 

Hopefully the tips that I have learned over the years will help you to find a neighborhood that you love. If you have any questions about local neighborhoods please call me up and I would be happy to share my knowledge.

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