Published 9/28/22

How to Hone in Your Home-Buying Priorities

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There are a myriad of factors that you must take into account when you’re searching for a home. In addition to your budget, you need to think about how long you want to live in a home, what neighborhood is best, and what school district you want to be in. Of course, some of these considerations are more important than others — especially when you’re choosing between a starter home and your forever home. Consider these tips and help from Franklin Investment Realty to establish your priorities and make the right choice.


Assess Your Plans for the Future


One of the biggest factors that will influence your home search is how you envision your future. If you plan on having kids in the next few years, for example, investing in your forever home may be a better idea. It will likely be bigger, offering more room to expand your family. Along with the additional space, though, will come more need for upkeep — and a bigger price tag, too.


Still, the additional cost may be worthwhile if you really want to put down roots in the area you’re shopping in. You can also avoid the hassle of moving again if you choose to invest in the home that you plan to stay in forever. Although a forever home will cost more, it could also be a wise financial move if you’re able to snag a low interest rate on your mortgage.


Conversely, if your plans for the future include a home that you can rent out in a few years, a starter home may be the better bet. A starter home will allow you to build equity and then eventually turn the property into a source of income.


Additionally, if you plan on staying for the long haul, it can be a good idea to explore your home warranty options. Not to be mistaken for homeowners’ insurance, a home warranty protects your home from incidentals, like appliance breakdowns or problems with essential systems like HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and more. Check out these steps to find the best home warranty provider.


Decide What You Can Afford


Your budget will likely be a deciding factor in whether you go for a starter home or your forever home. In most cases, a forever home will be pricier because it will be bigger than a starter home, and it may also be in a better area or have more amenities. You will need to weigh whether these additional features are worth the bigger monthly payment you’ll be faced with.


Although a starter home may have a lower listing price, there may be substantial repairs or upgrades necessary to get it to the point you want. According to statistics, the average home remodel costs between  $19,800 and $73,200. This is no small sum, and it could offset the savings you gained by choosing a starter home. This is especially true if you choose a fixer-upper that needs extensive repairs.


Finally, you should consider how easy it will be to resell the home you choose. Life changes can happen unexpectedly, and even if you opt for your forever home, you may find yourself needing to sell it. A starter home will likely be more difficult to resell — especially if you only invest in minimal upgrades. A forever home, on the other hand, will likely attract more interest from prospective buyers.


Get Your Priorities Straight Before House Shopping


Finding the right house can be difficult, but it can also be rewarding when you finally find the perfect home. Before you can find the perfect home, you need to determine whether you’re looking for a starter house or a forever house — and you need to get your priorities straight.

– Suzie Wilson


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