Assessing Your Priorities and Preferences When Finding a New Place to Live
Your home matters – a lot. It’s where you spend large portions of your life, day in and out. Besides being your base of operations, it influences your mood, your energy levels, and your overall wellbeing. The neighborhood around it is just as important, for similar reasons. As such, if you’re moving to a new place, it’s important to pick something that matches your needs and personality well.
In this post on the Dale Corpus Real Estate blog, we’ll discuss some friendly advice on picking the right new home (and neighborhood).
Cost of living
The cost of living is, arguably, the most important assessment you’ll be making. You should, ideally, prepare a budget to determine what you can afford. It’ll give you more direction when you’re looking for housing. Some costs to factor in include taxes, food, transportation, utilities, personal expenses, and more. 24/7 Wall St. offers a nice reference list of living expenses across major cities to help you estimate living costs.
Rent or buy?
Will you be renting or buying? Your financial situation will, of course, determine the answer. You may want to research the real estate market before you choose either option. If you’re considering buying a home “as is” – a popular choice because it’s cheaper – it’s important you proceed with caution. Some of these houses need to be double and triple-checked (because they’re not livable). Also, consider consulting with a lawyer and examining land records for red flags before committing.
Every area has its specialty industries and related job opportunities. If you aren’t moving for job-related purposes, you should research the employment opportunities thoroughly. For those thinking about starting a new business or moving an existing business, spend some time researching the laws and guidelines related to the state. Rules do vary, so if you’re planning to register as an LLC, you need to ensure you’re filing everything correctly.
The proximity of nearby amenities is always an important deciding factor. You want to be comfortable, and not have to go too far for your needs. Some popular amenity considerations include nearby healthcare facilities, grocery stores, entertainment centers, restaurants, parks, lakes, fitness centers, and educational institutions. You may want to talk to your family (if applicable) and weigh everyone’s wants and needs.
Neighborhood culture and safety
The culture of people in the neighborhood can make a difference in your experience. You may find the “feel” of a particular neighborhood more to your liking than another. Furthermore, you may want to prioritize safety, especially if you have a young family. You’ll need a peaceful home in a peaceful neighborhood, with good, friendly people. Roomgo advises you to check the chicken-coffee ratio. If there are more coffee shops around, it proves the neighborhood has been gentrified.
Proximity to friends and family
Having the support of close family and friends is always a good idea. It’s easier to visit them if they live nearby, not to mention they can help you settle in faster and their presence may make you feel more comfortable. Of course, not everyone is close to their family. In such cases, you may want to move further away instead!
The living space itself
Last, but not least, you’ll want to consider the house itself. Would you like a family home or an apartment? Will you be living alone, with your family, or with roommates? Other specific factors to consider are accessibility, outdoor space, number of rooms, bathrooms, furnishings, and lighting. If you’re renting, don’t forget to look at the contract and see if you agree with the terms and conditions. For example, you may not be allowed to make alterations after you move in, which may put you off.
It’s always a good idea to talk to your family and gather everyone’s input before you settle on a particular location or house. You can also talk to the real estate agent and check people’s experiences online for a particular area before moving in.
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