When looking for a place to call home, it’s easy to get side tracked by thinking with your heart rather than your head. First impressions can distract us from making the right decision.
Here is a Checklist and list of items/apps to have on hand which will help make things much clearer when shopping for your next potential home.
Items to bring with you when looking at potential homes:
- 1 ‘level’ app on your phone OR 1 marble
- 1 ‘compass’ app on your phone OR a compass
- 1 notepad with pen OR use ‘notes’ app on your phone
- Measuring Tape
There are many things that can be changed, upgraded, or improved after you have purchased a home, but the location is not one of them.
Think about the proximity to the places that you will need to frequent the most such as: work, schools, shopping, doctors, and (if you have a pet) dog friendly park or can you walk your dog close by?
Also take note, and research, if there are any new development(s) planned, or upcoming changes expected within a reasonable proximity to this home?
While air fresheners and open windows can clear out certain scents, this requires you to pay closer attention in order sniff out any potential issues. For example, if you notice a damp smell, it could mean the home has poor ventilation or issues with mold or water damage/leaks.
Do you think you detect a slant in the floor but you aren’t sure? You can use one of many free android or iphone level aps like this one with a visual level.
Or simply bring a marble in your pocket and place on a floor that you think might be slanted, you’ll know pretty quick if the marble starts moving fast in any one direction.
If you do notice something, ask your Agent to make a note of it and inquire with the owners. If you decided to move forward in a purchase, have your home inspector to also take a closer look.
Natural lighting is something that is often overlooked. Consider what time of day you are viewing this home.
North East South or West ?
It may be important to you where morning and afternoon sun lands on this home and property. For example, is it a shady backyard or a sunny backyard?
Not sure which way the home is facing?
Download one of the many free ‘compass’ apps for your android or iphone like this one and look out the main front window of the home while using the app and you will know which way the home is facing.
Shape & Size of Rooms
It is important to take a good look at the layout in each room to make sure your furniture can fit the way that you imagine it will. This is where a tape measure is always handy.
Is there enough space for everyone in your household to park or will this become an added expense? Where will visitors park?
If there is laundry facilities included in the home? If there is no laundry room at all, is the home located close to a laundromat that is accessible with or without a car?
Crawl space, storage under stairs, storage room, garage, or outdoor shed? Definitely important (and something that easily slips ones mind) is there enough storage space for your needs?
It looks perfect, but are you missing something?
Professional stagers can sometimes fool buyers into thinking a property is perfect while diverting their eyes away from potential issues. For example, they will often use smaller pieces of furniture to make a room feel larger.
Tip: bring a measuring tape to measure any area’s that you are unsure about.
Save time by writing down in advance, the measurements for your largest furnishings (such as a big sectional couch for example) to make sure they will fit in the space.
Kitchen and Bathrooms
The kitchen and bathroom are two of the most costly rooms in a home. Make sure you pay special attention to these rooms. Avoid getting stuck with unwanted repairs or updates after purchasing the home by more closely examining and testing everything.
*TIP: Be sure to write down appliances & brand names and ask what is included with the home so there are no surprises later.
Don’t solely rely on gut instinct or emotional first impressions alone.
Following a checklist, like this one, will help you make a a more informed decision when shopping for your next new home.
If you are seeking an experienced Realtor® to go to work for you in Langley, Surrey and surrounding area’s in BC, give me a call!