First Steps in Buying a Home

Once you have made your decision to buy a home and stop renting, you'll need a strategy to get started on your search. The secret in searching for the perfect home lies in your ability to identify exactly what you want out of a home.

You can get lost in the sea of choices presented by the home buying process. Choices require decisions: Where should I live? What type of home is best for my family? How big should my home be? All these decisions can overwhelm you but these can be managed easily by being as clear as possible about your wants and needs. Develop your own guideline for your ideal home to simplify the homebuying process. Below are some questions and issues to consider in creating your guideline.

1. What amenities do you want your home to have? Do you want to have a swimming pool, a garden, or a fireplace? Be clear with what you want so you can skip houses that don't meet your criteria.

2. Specify where you want to be located. The home's location is one of the most significant factors when considering different homes, according to author Ilyce Glink of '100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask'. Your location will determine how far you'll live in relation to family and friends, your kid's school, your work, and shopping areas. Location also determines the time you'll spend traveling each day. Ask yourself if your home and location justify your travel time each day.

3. What is the ideal size? Do you need more than three bedrooms? Is your family growing? If you are going to need more space in the near future, you may need to buy a home with more space than you currently use. Project your home needs for at least the next three to five years so you select the right size.

4. Are you willing to invest in renovating or refurbishing the home? If the house is not in move-in condition, how much are you willing to spend on modifications, renovations and other maintenance costs? Setting some guidelines in this area can help you eliminate certain homes from your radar as you search.

5. Will safety and security be an issue for you? If you have small children or are living alone, safety and security may be a top priority. Ask yourself what you will need in order to feel safe in the new neighborhood so you can eliminate homes that don't meet the criteria.

Being specific about your home buying criteria will help you save time in searching for your home. It will also make your stay in your new home more enjoyable because your new home would match your needs and wants.

Minnesota Realtor Alexandria P. Anderson helps people to find and purchase Minnetonka Condos, real estate, and Minnetonka Townhomes in MN.