When you're getting ready to find a new home, the process can sometimes be a little overwhelming. It can also be a lot of fun if you're properly prepared. There are several easy things you can do to make your home search experience better. Here are some helpful tips from our sales director, Kathy Phillips, to help you find the perfect home.
Look at location
Determining your ideal location is based on several personal factors that you feel are most important. When you identify locations you think you'd like to live in, take a deeper dive into whether it will work. How far is your commute? What is the traffic like? Are there good dining and shopping options nearby? Is good healthcare easily accessible? If you foresee doing a lot of travel, find out where the closest airport is located.
Once you've narrowed down your location, take a look at some of the popular communities located nearby. Check out their websites and social media pages. Are they active? Are there fun social activities? What kind of amenities do they have? Read the reviews and do a "birds-eye" or satellite map view of each community. Sometimes you'll discover interesting things nearby. Ensure the communities on your list have the amenities most important to you and your family.
Decide on house type
When buying a new house, there are essentially three ways you can go. You can build a brand new custom home, purchase a new home on spec, or opt for a resale. Some people like to start from scratch, some like a newly constructed, quick move-in home where they can pick their finishes. Deciding which appeals to you most will help to narrow your list of choices.
Create a checklist
Write down your "must-haves" required for your new home. How many bedrooms and bathrooms should it have? If you plan on having family stay with you often enough, ensure there is enough space for them too. Also, think about the space required to accommodate other things, like your vehicles or even a golf cart. If you are a boater ask if there is easy access or storage nearby. Inquire about home warranties, internet access, cell coverage, and taxes. Even if you don't have kids, ask about the schools. Why? Because good schools equal good resale value in the future.
Go on a tour
Make plans to visit the communities on your short list. Bring anything you need to take good notes and photos. Take a tour of the neighborhood and check out the amenities. Go on home tours of both resale and model homes that are of interest to you. Determine if there is enough room for things like your furniture (king bedroom set, for example) and your artwork. Take the time to visualize living in the home and if it has the right function and flow for your family. Don't forget to make note of the fit, finish, and build quality of the homes. If a newly constructed home is high on your list, visit the Design Center if one is on-site.
It's smart to think long-term. How will this home purchase help you be where you want to be in 5, 10, or 20 years from now? For example, can you envision aging-in-place in your new home? Will stairs be a problem? Are there family members with mobility issues? Or, perhaps the home is perfect for you now but you plan on selling it in ten years at a profit to upgrade to something else. Having vision into these things will help you make a smart choice.
Another smart choice? Harbor Club on Lake Oconee. Our award-winning, Southern Living-inspired, golf and lake community offers a wide variety of real estate options. We invite you to stop by and see for yourself why so many people have chosen Harbor Club as home.