The goal of owning a home is one of many people and finding that perfect house, whether it's you first or tenth, is something everyone would like to do as well. There are a few things you can do to help you find that dream home, some may seem obvious and others a little out there, but all are worth a try. Here are some tips to help you get started in your quest.
Make a List and Check It Twice
You'll never find your perfect home if you don't know what you want. Put your thoughts down on paper and be sure to divide your list into thing you will and won't compromise on. If you must have two bathrooms and you buy a house with a bath and a half, you'll be kicking yourself from day one. Check out different building designs as well. Don't get too crazy on the nice-to-have part though, you'll drive your agent up the wall if you tell them you want a starter home with an indoor pool.
Be Aggressive, Be, Be Aggressive
If you ever played a high school sport, you've heard the chant, "Be aggressive". When it comes to house-hunting, you sometimes have to play the game the same way. In a lot of markets, you'll be competing with many other buyers in your price bracket. Try making some changes to typical buyer's strategies. Get your agent to show you homes during the week, everyone wants to look on the weekends and they'll be able to give you more time if you can take a weekday to see some homes. Also, see a bunch. You can burn out but don't see one or two properties and call it a day. See five or six one day and five or six another and there's a good chance you'll see what you're looking for in a dream home (as long as you let you agent in on your have-to-have list).
Get the Money
There's nothing worse for you or your agent than looking at homes you can't afford, or don't know if you can afford or not. While shopping for a house, do the same for a home loan. Whether it's just doing the math on your own (or a home loan calculator), or by getting pre-qualified by one or more lenders, having a good idea about how much you can spend will make your life a lot less stressful.
A true dream home can be hard to find. Do your homework. Ask a lot of questions. Do the little things like check your cell phone and see what the signal strength is when you get to a property. Sometimes it's the little things that will really make the difference between liking a house and loving it.
Eileen O'Shanassy is a freelance writer and blogger based out of Flagstaff, AZ. She writes on a variety of topics and loves to research and write. She enjoys baking, biking, and kayaking. Follow her Twitter @eileenoshanassy