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As the pandemic hit, the housing market entered an unprecedented boom. In 2022, the number of first-time buyers approaching homeownership is predicted to increase another 6.6% – on top of the all-time highs already achieved in 2021! So, if you are looking to invest in a family home this year, you are certainly not alone.
Nonetheless, the prices of houses have also skyrocketed – which makes buying a home a significant investment for many. If you are looking to find a home for your family, here are some tips to follow to find the perfect property, set your expectations about the buying process, and enjoy your new home!
Be Clear on What Your Perfect Home Looks Like
It is impossible to find the perfect home if you don’t know what boxes it needs to tick! While the real estate options on the market are limited, you should not settle for something that does not meet your expectations and lifestyle needs. Here are a few considerations to make.
Type of Home
Depending on your lifestyle, a certain house structure might be preferable for you over others. Some of the housing options to consider include:
- Condominiums – perfect for small families and professionals who are facing a commute to the city center. Valid alternatives to condos are apartments and co-ops
- Townhouse – these are perfect if you love to be at the center of the action and your life is tied to the city life. You might find classic or contemporary townhomes.
- Ranch-Style home – these single-story houses derive from the Spanish hacienda and are a great alternative if you are looking to live outside of the city center, but in a secure and convenient location.
- Homestead – if you love nature and living large, a homestead might be the right choice for you.
- Tiny homes – if you are looking for a downsized, minimalist lifestyle, tiny homes can help you achieve your lifestyle goals while keeping your expenses to a minimum.
Size and Square Footage
As many first-time buyers are looking to buy a home in 2022, the key element of a perfect house is affordability. However, it is important to keep in mind that the pandemic has changed many aspects of our lifestyle, and we are all spending an increased amount of time indoors.
If you have transitioned to working from home and you are exercising at home, you might consider the benefits of a more spacious home with multiple dedicated living spaces.
Facilities & Living Spaces
The pandemic has drastically changed home design, and, today, home office, spacious gardens, and dedicated private fitness areas are a must-have for many owners to be.
Indeed, 3-in-4 people are planning to stick to at-home workouts, and 62% of workers report working from home at least occasionally. If you are also joining this lifestyle, you should look for a property that allows you to have enough space for all of those daily activities that are now taking place at home, including exercising, working, meditating, and entertainment.
Your home’s location can make a difference in your lifestyle. If you are working from home, in 2022, you might consider moving closer to your family or choosing a location in a beautiful area. However, if you are commuting to your office or you need to take your little ones to school, you might consider the benefits of city living – or suburban living!
When looking for a house in a town or neighbourhood that you are not familiar with, you should consider spending some time there before even checking the local real estate listings! Some options to do so include spending a few weekends in the area, visiting the attractions, or connecting with the local community.
Understand the Costs Involved
Naturally, a home’s purchase price is the most significant cost you will face when buying your new property. However, hidden and associated costs can be significant. And, without understanding what to expect, your new home can quickly become a major financial burden for you and your whole family.
Luckily, you can budget for your purchase by understanding all costs involved and using a mortgage payment calculator. Some of the expenses you’ll face include:
- Mortgage broker fees
- Appraisal fees
- Home inspection
- Closing costs
- Land transfer tax
- Legal fees
Be Clear on the Running Costs
All properties come with substantial running costs – however, no two properties will have exactly the same ones! Indeed, if you decide to invest in a rural, spacious property, you’ll be looking to pay higher maintenance costs than those involved in a condo.
However, no matter the type of property, it is important to understand what are the costs involved, what maintenance the house needs, and how to save on water and energy costs.
Some of the costs to watch out for include:
- Gas, electricity, and water bills
- Parking chargers
Find Professional Help
If you are looking to buy a new home, the chances are that you will want to invest your savings in getting a better, nicer, or larger house. While you might be looking to keep associated costs to a minimum, there are some professional figures that can truly help you in your house-buying journey. Here are some of the most important professionals you should collaborate with:
- Estate Agents – estate agents can help you pinpoint the perfect property for your needs, negotiate a price that is convenient for all parties involved, and streamline the buying process. Their fees can be high, so make sure you know what to expect before choosing a certain estate agent.
- Mortgage Brokers – partnering with a mortgage broker can help you increase your chances of securing the mortgage amount and rates you are after. They have a significant network of lenders to rely on and can help you submit a winning application.
- Home Inspectors – buying a home without professionally inspecting it can cause you to end up spending a lot more on repairs, maintenance, and renovation. Home inspectors can help you understand the building’s value and prevent you from overpaying for it!
Trust the Process!
Finding and buying the perfect home is not an overnight process – and you shouldn’t settle for something that isn’t perfect. Make sure to take your time, learn all you need about this process, and surround yourself with expert professionals who can help you.