Q&A: Lifestyle Considerations Before Buying a Home
- March 29, 2016
- By Cody Battershill
Q&A: Consider These Questions Before Purchasing a Home...
Are you currently in the market for a new single-family home, condominium or other type of property? Before you start narrowing down the search, doing a full review of your lifestyle, both now and in five to ten years down the road, will make a huge difference in what kind of property you need to be satisfied with your purchase.
Here are some lifestyle-related questions that you should ask yourself before signing on any dotted lines:
Q - Where will I frequent the most in the city?
A - If you are currently single and working downtown, chances are that living in a multi-family development in a central or inner city community would be great for getting to and from work.
Commuting times would be short, meaning more time for more important things in life other than sitting in traffic.
Maybe you are a young professional looking to experience the culture and lifestyle of the urban city to the fullest. Living a few blocks off of that main entertainment avenue may just be your thing.
Perhaps you are working at a gas plant outside of the city limits somewhere and love outdoor activities offered by the surrounding area.
A suburban home would make it easy getting to and from those favoured activities and in most cases would also provide more yard space for things such ATV’s compared to your typical inner city infill.
Q - Where do I spend the most time at home?
A - For example, let’s take the kitchen as a place where you would spend a lot of time. Nowadays, this is true in many households especially for families with children who we all know are bottomless pits when it comes to food.
A six-cook gas stove or a larger central island may be right up your alley. Or, maybe it’s more space for a dining table and a bigger double-door fridge if you are planning to have kids sometime soon.
Q - What is my personal “maintenance-quotient”?
A - Are you a gardener? Do you enjoy maintaining flower beds and mowing lawns? What about do-it-yourself projects like landscaping and repainting the fence?
These are important questions to evaluate when considering which type of property is right for your lifestyle.
Single-family home ownership comes with many responsibilities. If you want to maintain the value of your home while also protecting the financial investment that you have made, then you will want to ensure that it is maintained properly and stays in good condition.
This means performing maintenance on things that need to be fixed or updated on a regular basis. Are you prepared to put in the time and effort, or would you rather have a lock-and-leave lifestyle like that offered by a condominium?
Here’s an idea of what kinds of maintenance and the relative amounts you should be performing on a single-family property:
IF you are in the market for a new home, make sure to get a proper home inspection and ask your professional real estate agent on advice pertaining to the current condition and possible maintenance needed to maintain the property.
This should give you a good idea as to how much work it may be to maintain it or get it into the condition you would like if you decide to buy. Why is a Home Inspection as Important as it Gets anyways?
Q – What am I missing in my current home?
A - A telltale sign that you have outgrown your current home is when you begin to daydream about more space. Things such as an additional parking space in the garage, a bigger backyard or state-of-the-art basement movie theatre are a few examples.
Maybe it’s because you now have children, got a pay raise or simply want to entertain friends more often. Whatever the reason, your lifestyle has evolved along with your wants and needs - don’t sell yourself short if you can afford the upgrade!
Q – What do I not want any longer in my current home?
A - People don’t always want to add space either. You could have recently become an empty-nester and are looking to downgrade to a cozier and lower maintenance multi-family property, for example.
Most downsizers choose between condominiums and townhomes. While these properties are similar in some respects, they do differ in terms of maintenance, security and usually price on a comparable basis.
Take the time to evaluate what spaces you can and cannot live without if choosing to downsize. In today’s market, as a buyer you have a wide variety of options and finding a property with all the features you want is doable.
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