The two worst situations to find yourself in during the house hunting process are not finding a home you wish to purchase and falling in love with two or more homes. The latter is a decision that’s hard to make when each offers something desirable that the other lacks.
The first thing I suggest to my clients in this predicament is to make a list of what you like and don’t like about each home. If you’re a member of a family, have each person do the same. Now, it may turn out that one person’s “like” is another’s “can’t stand,” so understand that compromises will have to be made.
Here are a few criteria to use when making your decision.
While the homes may be tough to compare, the neighborhoods may not be. Remember, you’ll not only be living in a house, but in a community as well and it’s important to investigate it thoroughly.
Check out the neighbors. Do they keep their homes up? Is it too noisy/quiet for your tastes? If you have children, are there others in the neighborhood that your kids can play with?
Consider the school district as well. Your new home will hold its value better if it’s located in a quality school district.
Finally, if crime is a concern, check the statistics in both neighborhoods.
This part of the process needs to be approached with as little emotion as possible. You’ll need to look beyond the staging, the pretty wall colors and yummy floor coverings to the flow of each floor plan. Does it fit your lifestyle?
Consider your future plans as well. If you’re considering starting a family, will there be enough room for one or two more?
In the end, it may just come down to one deciding factor: which home will hold its value better and, therefore, be the better financial investment.
Image: By Jagbirlehl (Own work) CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons