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Beyond the Four Walls: Top Tips for Home Buyers

The market that we’re in and have been in for a while, moves fast likes fast and sometimes it is easy to get distracted with all the razzle-dazzle inside the house and not pay attention to the things outside of the four walls. So I’ve got a few things that I want to make sure that you’re paying attention to, as you’re looking at homes and trying to find that dream home that you actually want to buy.

#1: Location. I know, it’s really easy to get dazzled by all those interior features, but if the location is not where you want to be, then it’s probably not going to be where you want to be. Because you don’t stay in your house all the time. By location, I don’t mean that if you really want to live in the city, you move to the suburbs, or vice versa. But if you generally want to be able to walk to coffee shops, maybe investigate other locations, that allow you to be able to do that, that allow you to get out walk with your dog, maybe it’s a sidewalk neighborhood, maybe it’s in town, but you don’t probably want to change your entire lifestyle for where you want to live just because you love that actual house. So think about the location and know what your deal breakers are with that.

#2: The next thing you want to make sure of is how much are you going to have to put into the house. So say it’s a great location, it’s the perfect place for you to be it’s exactly the street you want you love everything about it and the house is pretty good. Can you live with the old out-of-date kitchen for a while? Or can you afford to go in and blast it out and redo the whole thing right away? So make sure you know what your tolerance is for the work, the financial expenses of the work, and the timeframe that the work is going to need to be get done. Because those things are going to matter when you actually get into the house and are living in it. You want to make sure that the trade-off for the neighborhood is equal to what you have to give up in making those changes and updates happen.

#3: Is there an HOA? What does that include in Virginia? We do have a three-day right of rescission when you receive that package from the HOA. So if there is a homeowner’s association, you do have to receive a copy of all the documents and you want to make sure that you look at them that you can live with what that is and look at the financials to make sure they’re in a good financial position so that you’re not going to have to pay an extra surprise $2,000 next year to redo the pool. And if you have to make sure that you love it enough that you want to spend that money and that you can afford it.

#4: (and less important probably) The utility costs. I remember a time when I went from driving a Prius to driving a Toyota Highlander and let me tell you, I knew it was going to be a bigger car, but I was not anticipating that the gas would be like four times as much. So, I got over it but it was a little bit of a rude awakening and something I hadn’t considered. So if you’re going from a 1,500-square-foot house, and buying your 3,200-square-foot dream house, make sure that you can afford those utilities. This is particularly important when it comes to things like pools and hot tubs because that is a whole different set of heaters and water that you have perhaps never dealt with. And it’s going to take a big hit on your budget for more information on all that goes into finding a home, purchasing a home, and things leading up to closing check out all of my buyer’s videos on YouTube. There’s a wealth of information there but if you have any questions that I can help with personally, or of course help you find a house in the Richmond area. I’d love to help give me a call.