Have you found the perfect home for you yet? Does your house feel like home? Do you long to go back to that relaxing sanctuary of yours after a long, tiring day at work?
According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, shelter falls within the safety category and comes next after the physiological needs of food, water and sleep. After all, it’s a basic survival pillar.
Mind you, there’s a big difference between a home and house. A house is just a shelter; a concrete structure. A home, on the other hand, is what YOU make of that house. It’s your safe haven that reflects you in every sense, from your personality to your lifestyle and even your values.
Nevertheless, finding and buying the perfect home may not always be an easy task. Today we’ll take you through a few points to consider before making the important decision of buying or renting your new house. After all, it’s important that you find your perfect home that is, indeed, a reflection of you.
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1- Price and Taxes
Price is always a decisive factor when it comes to buying or renting a new home. You should already have a set budget in mind before hitting the market. Not only will this give you a rough idea about the type of home you’re looking for, but it will also save time since you’ll easily drop the options that are below or beyond your budget.
It’s always a good idea to look into a residential area that falls within your allocated budget. You’ll find that areas with more amenities tend to be more expensive; set your needs and priorities then compare them within you budget.
You should also incorporate annual taxes into the budget of your new home. There are cities and towns with higher taxes but in the Kingdom of Bahrain, for example, there are no taxes on homes. Bahrain’s real estate market is also abundant with homes that fit almost every need and budget.
2- The Purpose
The property that would make a perfect home for an independence-seeking recent graduate who is planning to enjoy bachelorhood and solitude for a while is not a choice that would likely be considered by a family man who is looking for a better home for his loved ones or even a new-wed looking for their perfect home.
As obvious as this point might seem, compensating what you need right now for what you might need in the future is not an unusual mistake to make in your purchase decisions, not just of real estate, but everything else. Your purpose should be initially defined, as it helps in determining and prioritizing your needs (area, facilities and neighborhood) and what could be compensated for the time being.
Affordability is all about how much of your income you’ll be putting into buying/ renting and up-keeping your home. Bear in mind that when you move from one place to another your expenses might change. Consequently, you’ll have to consider things like groceries, gasoline, water, electricity and taxes.
4- Public Transportation
The length of time it takes you to get to work or back home can be a determining factor in your decision to move to a new home. The decision of considering a certain property as a perfect home may be based on this factor alone.
Some residential areas offer a nearby reliable network of public transportation. You might want to consider buying a home there, even if you own a car. Not only will this save you the time and stress of driving to and from work, but it’ll also help you save on gasoline consumption and car maintenance.
4- Hospitals and Clinics
Nearby healthcare facilities are always an important factor to consider when looking for your perfect home. If you have young children in the family, you probably know that they fall sick very often and require recurring medical attention. Choose an area with a reliable and nearby hospital, polyclinic or healthcare center; this will ensure you can get the immediate help you need in case of emergencies.
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If you have kids, the last thing you want in the new home you are looking for is for it to be across town from your children’s school. There are several residential areas that include schools and educational centers. It would be a good idea to start searching for your choice of public or private school.
Next, start looking for a home that suits your needs and allocated budget within the school’s vicinity. Your children’s future matters most, but you wouldn’t want them to spend hours in commute every morning and afternoon.
Once again, this is one of the vital factors that you need to consider in your real estate hunt. You can start by looking into neighborhoods that have a good safety reputation and low crime rates. Although they might be more expensive, it’s well worth the investment.
There are several residential areas and compounds that offer additional security services, albeit for a higher price. You might want to consider looking for a house there or opt for equipping your home with an alarm system to guard against intrusions.
8- Hire a Professional
Buying a house is a commitment with a high investment. Therefore, you can’t afford to make a wrong purchase and risk all your money.
Having said so, it is always recommended to hire a realtor or real estate agent, especially if you’ve just moved to a new city or country. There’s no harm in paying a little extra to guarantee that you’re getting the right house for you.
When it comes to buying real estate in general, and finding your perfect home specifically, there are some critical precautions you need to perform to not fall for a fraud that include but are not limited to the following: a) Getting a copy of the contract and having it checked by a lawyer, and b) making sure the property has all the necessary official licenses. These procedures will help you avoid picking a wrong property to buy, even if it has everything you need.
10- The Floorplan:
Perhaps the most relative factor that differs from one buyer to another. The more the occupants, the more spacious the property should be, If you are living solely, a studio apartment might be ideal for you. That, however, might – or might not – be the best decision for new-weds and definitely will not work with a family that is moving from one place to another. You also need to make sure that the property’s floorplan is divided properly to fit your needs (i.e. number of rooms, which of them has a window/a balcony viewing the street and which is not, etc).
Focusing on your needs will help you in assessing your options more accurately and finding the perfect home more quickly, and remember that the degree of risk you are willing to take should be inversely proportional with the number of people you would share this property with.