What is more important to you, the house itself or the location? New home buyers in Colorado tend to lean toward one or the other. It’s rare for any buyer to find their dream home in their dream location within their budget. This article will help you determine your priorities and narrow your house hunt.
What Matters Most to You as a Home Buyer in Colorado?
It’s time for a bit of self-analysis. Take the time to understand your priorities before starting your home search. Everyone you live with should be involved in the process. Make decisions as a family about what matters most to you. Start by making three lists:
1. What is your ideal location? If you could live anywhere you wanted, where would you live? As a home buyer in Colorado, the possibilities are endless. Do you dream of living near the mountains with a great view? Alternatively, would you prefer to live in the city where you can walk to your favorite cafe every morning? Maybe you picture yourself living the all-American dream with a white picket fence and neighborhood barbecues. In any case, think about what will have the most significant impact on your daily routine. If you work in an office, you may favor a shorter commute. Families with children often prefer living within a couple of miles of excellent schools.
2. What home features are vital to you and your family? Your house is your livelihood. You sleep, you cook, you play, and often work from home! Your ideal home will satisfy your daily needs AND your wants. Make a list of what parts of your home you use EVERY day. Additionally, consider your future goals. Do you want to start (or expand) your family? If you often host or invite family over, a big backyard or roomy living room space should be at the top of your list.
3. What are your deal breakers? Deal breakers are aspects of a home you can’t imagine living with—things about the home that would make your daily life harder and make your life worse. Your deal breakers could be things like street parking only, a long work commute, lack of storage space— you name it. Every buyer will have a unique list.
Look over these three lists and see what stands out to you. What are your “musts”? Are the features of your house or the location of the home more important?
If Location is Your Priority
If you’ve determined that “location” is your answer, then you know that where you live affects everything about your lifestyle. You also understand that you can always improve the home but can’t change the location. As a home buyer in Colorado, you know location is also a major factor when you consider resale value. Once you’ve determined this is your priority, the next step is to see what homes are available within your budget.
If your budget is tighter, think about buying a fixer-upper or a smaller home. If single-family homes are too expensive, look at townhomes in the area. What about a condo unit? If you can’t find anything within your ideal area that fits your budget and most of your needs, then you might have to think outside the box. You don’t want to wait years to buy or become a chronic renter.
The House is More Important to You
If the “house” is your priority, you know that a home’s features are your key selling points. Spending time at home, entertaining, and enjoying your space will make you the happiest. Some buyers lean toward this answer since they prefer a move-in-ready home. They’re willing to be flexible with the location to find a home within their budget. House hunting is easier when the location doesn’t restrict your search.
Once you know the home features you must have, then you’ll have an idea of where you can buy within your budget. So your location search becomes flexible until you find the “right” home for you. Remember that purchasing the most prominent house on the block or buying the perfect home in a not-so-great neighborhood can be risky when retaining value and resale. You still want to make an educated decision when determining a location.
With a bit of give and take, you can find a home you’ll love in a location that can work for you and your family. If you have any questions about being a new home buyer in Colorado, please get in touch with me. I’m confident we can find a home you love with a location and price tag you’re comfortable with. Next week’s article will talk about the three steps most homebuyers skip. You don’t want to miss it!
Want to get your hands on my ultimate Home Buying 101 Guide? You can snag it here!
I'm Lauren Haug! I'm a teacher-turned-real estate agent, and I teach people how to build wealth through real estate in Northern Colorado.
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