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How to Find a House

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Before you can move, you have to have a place you can move into. Finding the right home for you can be a challenge. Not only do you need to find a house that is available, but you also need to consider all of your needs and you budget. Here are a few things to remember while looking for a home.

What type of home are you looking for?

Before you can search for a home, you need to know what you're looking for. There are several factors to consider when searching for a new home. You need to create a list of priorities for what you are looking for in your home and rank them according to what you need the most to what you could do without. No home is going to be perfect for you in every aspect. Accepting that fact will help make the house finding process much easier. Once you know that some houses will never work for you, you can really begin the search for a home in earnest. Here are some of the things that you should consider when deciding what kind of home you are looking for:
  • Proximity to work: How close is the house to the places you need to be for your career? The public transportation and traffic patterns in the area can factor into this decision, as well. Some people don't mind longer commutes but some simply can't tolerate or afford them.
  • Proximity to family/friends: Being near loved ones is very important to some people. How easy is it for you to visit friends and family from your prospective home? This often has to balanced with proximity to work when choosing a location. This can be further complicated by partners that have work and family in different locations. A compromise is almost always necessary in regards to location.
  • Price range: Budgeting can be tough, but you need to be firm in your price range when searching for a home. Higher demand areas often cause prices to be higher. It is important to be aware of the hidden expenses that living in a particular house may entail. Costs of renovations or transportation can make low-priced houses more expensive in the long run. Have a price range and only break it for the highest priority reasons. You do not want to eventually get behind on your mortgage payments and face foreclosure because you overspent on your house.
  • House type: Do you want to live in a suburban area, or do you want more space between you and your neighbours? Do you prefer city or rural living? How important is indoor or outdoor space to you? Do you want a ranch-style house or a home with multiple stories? It is best to be flexible with the exact specifics of your future home, but if you have trouble walking up stairs, chances are you should probably only look for ranch houses. Consider what you want and need out of your home, but remember your budget while doing so.
  • NeighbourhoodHow much privacy do you want from your neighbours? Is the area known for crime? How are the schools or other public services? Do you think you'd get along with your prospective neighbours?

Finding the right house

Once you've decided what homes to eliminate from your search, you can start by looking in the desired area. If you are moving near friends and family, it is best to ask them for advice and references on where to look. Nobody knows a particular area quite like the people who live in it. They can let you know of any open houses in the area and which sellers to avoid.

Online searches are also helpful. A website like Homefinder is a good place to start. You can enter all of the information about the type of home you want and your desired location in search parameters. You should get several listings. Be sure to only trust online listings if a wealth of information, including pictures, is offered online. Some online sellers are scammers and the homes presented may not even exist, so it pays to be careful and look for as much information as possible when shopping for homes online.

Local newspapers can also point you towards lower-profile housing. Not every listing makes the cut in nationwide sites like Homefinder, but local publications will publish just about anything on a a local level.

Keep an eye out for property auctions in local or online publications as well. Buying foreclosed properties is a good way to get a discount on a home.

Finding a real estate agent is also extremely helpful. If you can get one referred to you by friends or family, that is a bonus. Agents will listen to all of your concerns and essentially find a few houses for you to choose from, based on the parameters you set out for them. Some agents work on a commission basis for real estate companies, so you may not even need to directly pay them. Just be mindful of where they are getting paid from and be sure that the agent is certified, or even choose an officially certified Realtor. You can rely almost completely on an agent to find you a good home if you can trust them.

The true keys to finding a home are knowing what you want and knowing who to trust. Once you decide what you can or can't live without, you can use an online database or a real estate agent to find your next home in no time.

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on July 28, 2014 - Moving Expert
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