Apr 27, 2015
Looking to purchase a new home? If you’re having trouble deciding between a few great houses, try using this helpful home buying check list to figure out which is the right fit for you and your family.
1. Make sure there is enough space. Measure the square footage of every home you are considering. Pay attention to the size of the living space and most popular rooms: kitchen, bedrooms, and living room. Is there enough room for all your furniture? Do your kids have room to play? Make sure there is enough space for your family and your lifestyle.
2. Research the neighborhood. There are so many different communities to fit various lifestyles throughout Hilton Head Island and the Lowcountry. Research population demographics, crime rates, schools, local shops and restaurants, and transportation options for every location.
3. Check the exterior of the house. What is it made of? Maintenance costs vary depending on the type of exterior. Aluminum and vinyl siding are generally cheaper to maintain, while the upkeep on painted shingles and stucco can be very expensive.
4. Weigh your storage options. Are there enough closets and storage spaces throughout the house? Is there a closet in every bedroom and enough space to store all your belongings? Measure the attic space and take note of any outdoor sheds, garage storage, and other spaces. You can never have too much storage space!
5. Check out the garage. Does the house have a garage? What type of garage is it? Garages offer a secure, sheltered area to store vehicles, yard equipment, and other belongings. Consider whether you want an attached or detached garage, and if you need enough room for one, two, or three cars.
6. Make sure you have enough bathrooms. How many full baths does your family need? Sharing bathroom space can be a hassle and lead to unnecessary conflict. The home you purchase should have enough bathroom space for everyone.
7. Make a list of the appliances that come with the home. Not all homes include necessary appliances like refrigerators and stoves. Make a note of the existing appliances that stay with the home after the sale. Dishwashers, washing machines, ovens, and even microwaves all cost a lot of money if you have to purchase them separately.
8. Don’t forget the yard! What kind of yard does the house have? Is it big enough for a vegetable garden or swing set? Decide how much time you can dedicate to maintaining your lawn and how often you’ll be outdoors enjoying it.
9. Check out the utilities. All homes should have utilities up to local codes, but it’s a good idea to check the plumbing, electrical systems, and the HVAC for maintenance and efficiency. You can also research the usage on the home and find out how much you can expect to pay for electricity and water. Remember to research the local television and internet providers.
10. Calculate the cost of maintenance. Can you afford to maintain the home? Lawn and garden upkeep, exterior cleaning and maintenance, and utilities can be expensive. Be sure to calculate the total estimated monthly expenses before making a decision.
If you want to make a little piece of The Island your own, you need more than just a road map and a REALTOR. You need a partner who can make things happen.
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