Buying Tips

The Dream Home Checklist 
These six items will help you prioritize the features, elements, and amenities you’re looking for in your new home. There are some that you must have, and there are some that you would like have if price allows, and there are probably some on the checklist that you hadn’t even thought about until now.
1.    Price
Knowing ahead of time how much you can afford and what you are able to spend immediately enables us to narrow down the vast market of homes to about 10 percent of what’s currently on the market.
2.    Type of property
Are you looking for a house, town home, condo, co-op, or multi-unit home?
3.    Condition of property
New or old? How much sweat equity do you want to put into the property? Do you want to pay a little less and invest time and money to improve the house yourself, or do you want to buy a house that’s ready to move into?
4.    Must-haves
The must-have is essential in your new home. For example: “We have a newborn baby, so we must have a two-bedroom house.”
5.    Nice-to-haves
A nice-to-have may get nixed out of the mix if price becomes an issue. For example: “We have a newborn baby, so we would like to have a three-bedroom house to have an extra room for guests or for a home office.” That third bedroom is not a must-have and you could (or may have to) live without it to get into a house you can afford.
Determining nice-to-haves vs. should-haves
Knowing your must-haves vs. should-haves is a key element to house shopping. It will help us sort through all the properties on the market quickly and easily, helping us focus on those that are in your price range and worth your time and energy to view and inspect.
Of course you will amend your must-haves and nice-to-haves. As you begin to preview houses, you will have to make some compromises on your list. Separating your must-haves from your nice-to-haves lets you decide where you can compromise to meet your budget.
6. Location
Where do you want to live? If you’re like most home buyers, you have a basic idea of where you want to live. Proximity to family, friends and/or work plays a significant part in where you ultimately want to put down roots. However, there is a lot of leeway within these parameters – neighborhoods and communities within the same distance often vary quite a lot.