Buying your first family home might feel a little bit daunting. What do you look for? What’s more important — living next to a good school or close to friends and family? Will a spare room prove more useful than a garden in the future?
And, if you’re also trying to sell your house at the same time, you might feel under more pressure to find a new home quickly.
So, to remove some of the stress, here’s a list of five things to consider when looking for your perfect family home.
Location is everything. There are a few factors to consider.
- Are there local green spaces and parks — if yes, what facilities do they have?
- Is there a well-equipped playground within walking distance? Does it cater for younger or older children? E.g. is there a separate area for toddlers, or an adventure park for older kids?
- How close are the local nurseries and schools? Do you need a car to get to them?
- Are local cafes’ and restaurants child-friendly? Many pubs these days have an outside play area for children — this is a good sign they welcome families.
#2 Speak to local people
If you’re moving to a new town or area, it can be tricky to find out what its really like to live there.
Hello, social media — most neighbourhoods have their own community page on Facebook. Also, there are many local mums and parent groups online these days too. These are truly great sources of information about what’s happening locally. Feel free to join these groups and post a question yourself. If people love their neighbourhood, they’ll be quick to tell you what’s great about it.
In the real world, speak to neighbours, local shopkeepers, or even people you might meet in the local park or cafe. You’ll be amazed at how much local intel you can glean that will help you get a truer sense of a neighbourhood.
We all know good schools are popular, so often are over-subscribed. So, if you want to be in with a chance of getting a place, you need to live within the catchment area. Or, basically, as close to the school as possible. So, not surprisingly, these properties tend to cost more as there’s a higher demand for them. On the other hand, if this isn’t an issue or you have budget constraints, moving a few roads away can make the difference between having a garden or not. So, you need to weigh up your priorities.
#4 Agree your priorities
Depending on your budget, you probably need to prioritise what’s most important to you and your family. For instance, is having a large outside space more important than location. Or, would you prefer an extra room rather than a driveway. By being clean on your criteria, you can narrow down your search— especially if your viewing properties with a baby or toddler in tow. The last thing you to do is waste time viewing places that don’t meet all your needs.
One of the reasons buying a new home is stressful is due to the unpredictability of the process. And, if you’re also selling your home too, you may find yourself in a long chain making it tricky to plan ahead. But, obviously, no one wants to move just before or just after having a baby. And, ideally, it’s better to organise your move during school holidays, so you’re less stressed, and the kids have more time to settle into their new home.
Need advice to help you to sell your property fast?
If you’ve found your perfect family home but can’t sell your house, you can use a cash house buyer to help secure a quicker sale. Then, you don’t have to stress about getting stuck in a chain. Rather, you’re free to move in when you’re ready.
** This is a guest post **