Avoid Tunnel Vision When Searching For a New Home

by Janet Murray 12/15/2019

When buying a house, especially your first home, it's all too easy to make impulsive decisions and fail to "see the forest for the trees."

Although it's impossible to ignore your emotional reactions to a house for sale, it's vital to look at the big picture and make sure there are no red flags being ignored or glossed over.

For example, if the foundation of the house looks unstable or the surrounding neighborhood is showing signs of deterioration, it's ultimately not going to matter how much you love the layout of the kitchen or the convenience of a first floor laundry room. Major problems can overshadow the desirable features of a home and have long-term implications on your finances (and sanity).

Even though the future marketability of a house may be the last thing on your mind when you're searching for your next home, it's a factor worth giving some serious thought to. When that aspect of home ownership is overlooked, it could result in headaches and possible financial loss down the road. While real estate generally has a tendency to appreciate in value over time, there are exceptions.

The good news is that many potential problems can be prevented by combining common sense with the advice of qualified professionals, such as an experienced, certified property inspector. If you're wondering what's covered in a typical home inspection, the American Society of Home Inspectors offers this overview: "The standard home inspector’s report will cover the condition of the home’s heating system; central air conditioning system (temperature permitting); interior plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors; the foundation, basement and structural components."

So while inspectors can't look behind every wall or accurately predict the remaining lifespan of an existing HVAC system, they can provide you with a lot of valuable tips, recommendations, and insights into the condition of a house for sale. Working with a top-notch real estate (buyer's) agent will also help you avoid many of the potential pitfalls of buying a home.

While nobody wants to move into a "money pit," the likelihood of finding a home that's absolutely perfect and doesn't need any repairs, updates, or improvements is extremely low. Home buyers who are too focused on perfection may eventually realize that their standards are unattainable. A successful search for a new home hinges on the ability to distinguish between a minor cosmetic problem, such as an unappealing paint color, and a major problem, like a basement that floods regularly or a roof that's been compromised by storms, falling branches, or long-term neglect.

Although home buyers have differing expectations when it comes to repairs, remodeling, decorating, and renovations, one thing's for sure: Everyone wants to add their own personal touches to a new home and make it feel and look like their own!

About the Author
Author

Janet Murray

Whether you're in the research phase just beginning of your real estate search or you know exactly what you're looking for, you'll benefit from having a real estate professional by your side. Let Janet Murray put her real estate experience to work for you.

A real estate broker since 2003 including 6 years in a management and marketing role, Janet has an extensive background in residential real estate sales and a skill set that is of great benefit to clients and colleagues alike.

Primarily serving the South Shore of Massachusetts (with the occasional trip North!), her philosophy is simple…she feels that working as a real estate professional is about much more than selling homes; it’s about making connections, building relationships, and working with clients and their families to fulfill real estate goals and dreams. She “loves going that extra mile to make each transaction a personal, positive, and memorable occasion!”

Professional affiliations include membership in the National Association of Realtors®, the Massachusetts Association of Realtors® serving on the board of directors, and locally, South Shore Realtors® where she serves as a 2019 vice-president to the board of directors.A firm believer in education and training, Janet has earned her GRI Designation (Graduate Realtor Institute), the designations of CBR® (Certified Buyer Representative), e-Pro®, and certified PSA® (Pricing Strategy Advisor).