Everyone has ideas about what they want in a home — a pool, walk-in closet, large windows. But are these all essential? Yes, time to make the difficult choices — balancing your wants and needs as a homebuyer. I’m going to be super honest with you. The number of homes for sale is low and it can feel challenging to find one that checks all your boxes. But if you know which features are absolutely essential in your next home and which ones are just nice bonuses, you can land a home that fits your needs.
So how do you go about creating your list of desired features? Let’s break it down. The first step is to get pre-approved for your mortgage. Pre-approval helps you better understand your budget, and that gives you a better idea of what can go on your list. After all, you don’t want to fall in love with a home that’s too far out of reach.
Checking that to-do item off the list (oh, the satisfaction), create a wishlist of all the features of a home you would like. Here’s a great way to think about them:
- Must-Haves – The things that are essential. If a house doesn’t have these features, it won’t work for you. This may include things such as distance from work or loved ones, number of bedrooms/bathrooms, etc.
- Nice-To-Haves – This falls more on the want end of the scale. The features that you would love to have, but can live without. No deal breakers here, but if you find a home that hits all the must-haves and some of the these, it’s a contender!
- Dream State – Just two words here: think big. This tips the want scale all the way! If you find a home in your budget that has all the must-haves, most of the nice-to-haves, and any of these, it’s a clear winner.
There is one final step. Once you’ve created your list and categorized it in a way that works for you, discuss it with your real estate advisor (need one? Let’s chat!). They’ll be able to help you refine the list further, coach you through the best way to stick to it, and find a home in your area that meets your needs.
Balancing your wants and needs as a homebuyer, may seem like a small task, but it can save you time and money. It’s also one of the keys to being successful in today’s competitive market. Let’s connect so we can work together to find a home that fits!