This is Morgan. He's married. He just had a new baby, and he's ready to buy his first home. This is: A Home of Your Own. A friend of mine who knows I'm interested in buying a house suggested I develop a list of priorities for my prospective new home. So, I began brainstorming and jotting down ideas, ordering them from the most to the least important. Since location is key for me, the list became a great starting point for research on cities and neighborhoods. With a family, logistics between work, home and school are very important. I wouldn't want to live in a house too far from my job, or else I'll end up spending more time on the freeway than in my backyard. In addition, statistics related to prime rates, school ratings, and proximity to public transportation are important for me to research so I can understand the differences between neighborhoods. Square footage and number of bedrooms and bathrooms are also fundamental considerations. What if my family continues to grow? Will the house and the lot accommodate additions? Is a large yard for my kid to play in less or more important to me than having additional space inside? This led me to start thinking about trade-offs between buying a fixer-upper versus a new or recently-updated home. A fixer-upper that is livable and requires only minor repairs and redesign can save me money up front, and offers the opportunity to increase the value of the home - like if an unfinished basement can be turned into a bedroom down the road. However, a fixer-upper with several structural and service issues can require expensive professional repair before the home is livable. On the other hand, new or remodeled house may already come with desirable features I want, like an updated kitchen or remodeled bathroom. For couples and families, sitting down together and developing a list like this can be a challenging but beneficial experience. It's a task that definitely saves time, and helps avoid conflict later on in the home shopping process.
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How Much Do I Need for a Down Payment?
Factors to Consider When Shopping for a Home
Buying a Short Sale Home
Home Loans: Fixed Mortgages vs. ARMs
How to Find the Right Real Estate Agent for You
What Mortgage Payment Can I Comfortably Afford?
When Is the Right Time to Buy?
How Does the Sale of a Foreclosed Property Work?