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When buying a property, the location, price and size shouldn’t be the only factors you consider. Several important factors often get overlooked in a homebuyer’s excitement and eagerness to ‘get the deal done’. Doing so however can affect the overall livability, enjoyment and even sometimes the eventual resale value of the home. With all this is mind, here are some things you should be keeping in mind as you shop for a new Waterloo Region home you may not have considered (yet.)
Not having adequate storage
While often overlooked, storage can be one of the most crucial elements to a happy and well-organized home.
The U.S. News and World Report revealed that an average person spends one year of their life looking for misplaced items. A whole year!
Another survey found in North America we collectively spend $2.7 billion yearly in replacing items we can’t find. Having enough storage ensures everything is in its proper place. And it should be a consideration couples and singles as, if you’re planning to have kids in the future, you won’t have to deal with shortages in storage at what is one of the busiest times in anyone’s life!
Ignoring resale value
Don’t take future possibilities for granted. You may eventually need to resell your house if you decide to move to another city, or to upsize or downsize. Buy a house whose value will quickly appreciate over the years. For example, a property in a developing area would likely sell higher in the future.
To determine what the future value of a property might be your real estate agent can be an excellent resource. A local agent spends a great deal of time watching their local market and likely have done for years, so they are far better positioned to give you a good, backed by experience and data, opinion than any online calculator could ever be.
Disregarding the neighborhood
Homebuyers, in their excitement, often focus their attention only on their prospective house. A neighbourhood can affect owners’ lifestyle and overall comfort, so it’s important to take it as seriously.
For example, if the house is located in a neighbourhood with a higher crime rate, or that doesn’t have nearby schools or grocery stores, it might be a good idea for a family with kids to reconsider. A good tip is to visit the property and the surrounding neighborhood at different times of the day. Visit in the mornings, afternoons and evenings to get a better picture of how the neighborhood behaves.
Overlooking important flaws
Sometimes, buyers resort to compromising especially if they’re on a tight budget or buying in a hot market. But overlooking important flaws can lead to future repairs that can cost a lot of money.
Remodeling an old kitchen can cost about $25,000 while renovating a run-down bathroom can cost $11,000. Outdated paint and furnishings, bad landscaping and faulty air conditioning units are some of the most common things buyers usually compromise on, but that then haunt them later.
On the other hand, there are red flags you should never ignore. While cosmetic changes are easy to make – if a bit pricey at times, they are just that, cosmetic. However, the following may pose threats on your family’s health and safety. These include:
- Mould – Mould can cause simple allergic reactions to serious respiratory problems. If allowed to run riot it can also compromise the walls, floors and in extreme cases even the foundations of a home.
- Outdated electrical wiring – This is a fire hazard, and could mean the entire house must be completely rewired. If, to be harsh, it does not burn down first.
- Issues with the sewage line – A simple hole could progress into something serious, which can cause problems like flooding. Or a sewage overflow. Which is terrible in SO many ways.
- Foundation issues – Foundation issues can lead to destruction in an event of a bad storm or gradual damage to the home that causes it to sink or shift.
A safe and comfortable home is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself and your family. Considering everything is a must, even when you want to buy fast. And when in doubt about something ask your real estate agent for their honest input. That’s what they are there for.