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If you’re getting ready to buy a home in Des Moines, there are some important questions you’ll want to ask yourself. Whether this is your first home, or you’re a seasoned buyer, it’s still important to get clear with yourself before diving into the search. This can save you time, money, and make the experience much less stressful. If you’re buying with a partner, discussing these questions together will help ensure that you’re on the same page. Here are some of the top questions:
Budget: What is my goal spending? What is my absolute max?
Many homeowners dive into their search with one number in mind. Perhaps it’s the amount they were pre-approved for or maybe it’s just the amount they feel comfortable spending. Getting a bit more granular here can be useful. Knowing how much you’re pre-approved for is important, and getting this information before you begin is a great step. From there, you’ll want to have some other numbers established for yourself as well. What is the range that you’re comfortable with? Just because you’re pre-approved for a certain amount doesn’t mean that you’re necessarily wanting to spend that much. Then you’ll want to ask yourself what’s your absolute max? If you find your absolute dream home, what is the most you’re able to spend? Getting clear on this before finding the dream house makes it a lot easier to make the right decision.
Location: What are my top three neighborhoods? Which locations are out?
Help yourself and your agent by refining your search. If there are specific areas of the city you’re focused on, start there. It’s also worth thinking about if there are areas you don’t want to be in. You might establish your top three neighborhoods to prioritize and expand from there if necessary.
Needs: What are my non-negotiables?
Homeowners should go into the house-hunting process with some clear parameters for themselves. Again, the more you refine your search in advance, the more efficient you can be. Now, that being said, if you have a lengthy list of non-negotiables, that might backfire and make your search more difficult. Ensure you’re separating wants and needs. Start with the things a home must have to work for you and your family, like a minimum number of bedrooms, for example. Having just a few guidelines like this can help you and your agent home in on the properties that are the best fit.
Wants: What are my nice-to-haves?
Creating a list of wants can make it easier to create the list of needs. By sorting features between these two lists, you help yourself to focus in on your priorities. A house might have five things off your nice-to-have list, but if it’s missing several of your must-have parameters, it’s probably not worth spending too much time on.
Have you been house hunting recently? Are these questions you’ve asked yourself? Are there any other questions you’d recommend for future homebuyers to consider before jumping into the search? I’d love to hear your thoughts!