24 Oct What should Edmonton Buyers look for in a home?
Separate Deal Breakers from Wants
Before you go to view your first home, have a list of deal breakers. If a house is missing any of these, walk away. This lowers the risk of an impulse buy on a home that feels perfect but is actually missing something critical. Have a large family? A 1-bedroom condo is probably a deal breaker. This applies equally to price. Set a price ceiling where you walk away in case you end up in a bidding war. This helps take the emotion out of the process and keeps you in control.
In a separate list write down all your wants. You want to cross off as many of these from your list as possible, but missing one of them won’t be reason enough to walk away. Commute to work in under 15 minutes would be nice but may not be a reason to walk from a home that fits all your needs and most of your other wants.
Talk to the Owners
Not every owner will want to speak with you in person (they have a REALTOR® for a reason). Wherever possible talk to the owners to learn what you can’t always see, hear or smell. Most homeowners have an emotional attachment to where they lived and will be more than happy to fill you in on the benefits (and sometimes even the drawbacks) of their neighbourhood. Homeowners have a legal obligation to be honest if you ask pointed questions. They can’t hide a known defect so ask plenty of questions! Their problems may otherwise soon be your problems.
Location, Location, Location
There’s a reason for this old adage. The location of your home is tied to more than just price. This is where you will spend the majority of your time. The neighbourhood will indirectly affect your safety through crime rates, happiness through access to local facilities, and much more. Think beyond commute times and whether it is the latest area to be gentrified. Imagine yourself eating, breathing, and sleeping in that area. The right REALTOR® will have local knowledge about your potential new neighbourhood. If you don’t already have an agent, choose a referral service that will match you to someone local that you can trust.
Leave Inspections to the Professionals
Even if you work in the trades, chances are that you don’t know everything about every trade. Spend less time worrying about the quality of the foundation and more time focused on your deal breakers and wants. These are within your control. Pay for a professional home inspection and don’t waste your time worrying about what’s in the walls since you don’t have the skill to accurately identify problems. Should you keep an eye for obvious signs of neglect and poor maintenance? Of course. Otherwise, leave the inspections to the professionals.