For most parents, there comes a time when you realise you need more space. Children grow up so fast. One minute they’re sleeping soundly in their crib and the next they’re running around the house, inviting friends over and causing all kinds of trouble. Finding the perfect home for your family is an enormous task. You have to find a property that’s spacious enough yet affordable, and a convenient distance from good schools, facilities and work. Crucially, you want it to feel like home.
Beginning your search for this ideal house can be overwhelming. There is so much to think about, from uprooting your current life to finding enough money to upgrade. It’s a stressful time for any family, but with sufficient guidance, you will be able to make all the right decisions. To help you out here is a quick and easy guide to finding the family home of your dreams.
Do your research
You can waste a lot of time viewing homes that won’t fulfil your needs or are out of your price range. Before you start house hunting, you should have a clear idea in your mind of what your dream property looks like. How many bedrooms do you need? Do you prefer an urban or rural setting? How big should the garden be? Making a list of the essential criteria will help you narrow down your search when talking to estate agents. This will allow you to focus all your time and energy on the right houses, and stop wasting time on the wrong ones.
If you’re unsure about the location, why not take a drive and look at some potential neighbourhood choices? Scrutinise the houses and decide as a family whether you could see yourself living there.
Set a budget
Buying a house is one of the most significant financial decisions you can ever make in life. They are extremely expensive, and usually take decades for homeowners to pay them off in full. Before you start viewing homes, take stock of your finances and work out what you can afford. Having a realistic figure in mind will help to narrow your search and keep you focused on finding the right home. You will no doubt need to save a great deal of your income to make the initial down payment, and there may be a whole host of additional fees involved such as mortgage brokers, valuation, solicitors, and surveyors. Obviously, there are companies similar to SoFi that will be able to offer you deals on things like a mortgage, so it is important you look around to find the best deal for you and your budget. Also, the more money you can save for a deposit, the better interest rates you will receive on your mortgage payments. Take a look at the housing interest rate 2020
Find a location
The location of your family home is one of the most important considerations. You want your children to grow up in a safe environment, but you need to consider the practicalities of life as well. Access to good education will be one of your top priorities. Research the quality of local schools, and pay them a visit to see if they would be suitable for your children. Transport links are another crucial factor. You and your partner will need to get to work easily, so make sure you are looking at areas with good road or public transport connections.
Children have a lot of energy and need space to run around and let off steam. You’ll need a home with a garden or at least some outdoor space or countryside so you can get some fresh air together as a family.
What about activities for the family? You don’t want your children to get bored so you might want to consider whether there are enough activities and clubs for them to join. How close are you to amenities such as shops and entertainment? Living in the middle of the countryside might be idyllic, but it’s not always the most practical option.
Weigh up your priorities and decide which factors are most important to you before making a decision.
Is there enough space?
The crucial element to look for in a family home is enough space. Not just for now, when your children are young and tiny, but in the future as well. Your children will soon grow up and start taking up a lot more room. Possessions accumulate as they get older, and if you don’t buy a big enough house, you will begin to feel cramped and overwhelmed. Your choice should be future-proof to prevent you from regretting your decision in years to come. You want enough room for kids to run around, as well as giving you space to breathe. There should be ample parking for the drivers of the household and plenty of storage space for the inevitable accumulation of “stuff.” The number of bathrooms is a critical factor. Although you may be happy with one now, you might not feel the same in a few years when you have teenagers in the house. You may also wish to consider the possibility of extending the home, in the event that your family grows a lot bigger than intended. Find out from the current owners whether they have applied for planning permission or been refused any extension requests in the past.
Check for defects
You might find an incredible deal on a beautiful home, only to find years later that the foundations are rotting or the house is sinking into the ground. A family home should be safe and long-lasting. Therefore it’s always a good idea to hire a professional surveyor to go over your home and check for any hidden defects before you buy. Even if you are planning to overhaul the walls and floors yourself, it is important to make sure that you will be doing the work within a sound framework. Spotting any structural problems from the outset can prevent you from making a poor purchasing decision and save you a great deal of money in the long run.
When you finally make the leap and sign that bit of paper, you don’t want to worry that you’ve made the wrong decision. That’s why it’s so important to take your time finding the perfect home. By doing your research, sticking to a budget, and prioritising the most important factors, you will be able to find the home of your dreams, and your family will live happily ever after.