When buying a home, you must take into account what your family really needs versus what the budget may allow. After all, home purchase is a long-term commitment and it will be your future home for the next five years or more. We have listed some items for you to consider before you begin your home search:
Determine Your Budget
Home purchase is a big ticket item and may require much funds. If you intend to take a bank loan, you have to compute how much monthly amortization you may commit to. As a rule, banks will require that your monthly amortization should not be lower than 30% of your gross household income. It would also be a good idea that you have saved for the downpayment portion of your home. This way, it will not eat up on your monthly expenses and you may have the time to save a little when the monthly amortization obligation comes.
What is Your Current Life Stage?
Is your family growing and you need more rooms for your children? Did you just get married? Or are you planning to retire and move to a smaller place? Lifestages often determine how much livable space we need in our home and what our community must offer. Identify your life stage and detail what you will need because this influence the price of the property you will be getting:
- Number of rooms will depend on how big your family is and who your family members are. If your children are teenage boys and girls, for instance, you will definitely need separate bedrooms. If you only have two family members, however, 1 – 2 bedrooms will be more convenient.
- House features. Determine the home features you family cannot live without versus what you want in your dream home. A big kitchen and dining area are more important for a big family rather than a playroom space for a toddler or new baby.
- Move-in Period. Does your family need to urgently move to a new place or are still you planning for your family’s future? Find out if you need a “Ready for Occupancy” unit or a preselling one because this has an effect on the price and financing schemes.
- Location and Transportation Options. Identify the places important for your family and find out if it is easy to drive or commute from your future home. Places that matter may vary per lifestage. For instance, a family with kids would want their new home to be accessible to schools, workplaces, and other recreational activities while retirees would want hospitals and places of worship to be nearby.
- Amenities. Check if your home’s residential community has a swimming pool, clubhouse, and other exclusive amenities that you and your family can use.
Inspect the Community and Environment
The location of your home should be clean, green, and flood-free. Ample trees and greeneries are indications that a development will have less pollution exposure. You might also want to explore around the development to check if it is safe and secure. Observing the various activities available in the community is also a way to check the quality of life being offered in the neighborhood.
Check the Property Management and Village Administration
Since you and your family will live in your new home, it is very important to also see how the community is being maintained. Check if the property management has regular garbage collections, grounds maintenance, and 24/7 security. The community administration must also be systematic, responsive, and reachable. Getting in touch with them should be easy for you, especially if you have questions and concerns.
Retail and Services
Convenience is key to your family’s happy living. As such, you need to do you homework and find out if your neighborhood is near malls, commercial areas, or any area for outdoor exercise and recreational activities.