Close your eyes and imagine your perfect home: your beautifully manicured lawn spread out in front of your modern mansion with a water view. Pool in the backyard with enough room for the kids to play games and for you to host BBQ parties for the neighborhood on warm summer nights. A large, open kitchen with the latest appliances, a three-car garage, and even a spare en-suite bedroom should you have out-of-town guests.
It sounds ideal, right?
Maybe it ‘s not really your definition of perfect, especially here in Long Beach, Washington, but you likely have some sort of a picture in your mind of what your dream home would have. In a perfect world, you could have that home.
Define what you’re looking for
Go ahead and make a list of all the things it would be fantastic to have in your new home, whether that be an ocean view, a sun porch, or a temperature-controlled wine cellar. That’s your “nice to have” list. Now make another list of things that are possible deal-breakers for you. This may include the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, or minimum square footage. Call this your “must have” list. Cover all of your bases with your “must have” list and get excited when some of the homes you view have items from your “nice to have” list. You can probably live without the in-home gym, but going without a master bathroom could be a bigger problem.
Be realistic about what you can afford
If you’re serious about buying a home, one of the first things you should do is get pre-approved for a mortgage. Being pre-approved will serve you better down the road once the closing process begins. It will also indicate what price range you and your Realtor should be looking at when you start your search. There’s nothing more frustrating than having your heart set on a home that you ultimately can’t afford, and nothing is more depressing than not being able to make your payments should you buy it anyway.
Think about the location
Maybe you believe it would be wonderful to have a small beach house in Long Beach or Seaview, but you might change your mind after suffering through a long commute for years. Think about the type of neighborhood you’d like to live in, what kind of amenities are nearby and how close you need to be to work or school.
The most valuable tip when it comes to finding your perfect home is to be flexible. Go into the process with a positive mindset, and you’ll be astounded at what a little imagination can do to a home. That home you weren’t so sure about when you first saw it online could end up being the home you’ve been dreaming about for years.