Balancing Your Wants and Needs as a Homebuyer This Spring
Despite the fact that there are more homes available than there were at this time last year, there is still an undersupply compared to more typical, pre-pandemic years. This is how realtor.com's Monthly Home Market Trends Report puts it:
“While the number of homes for sale is increasing, it is still 43.2% lower than it was before the pandemic in 2017 to 2019. This means that there are still fewer homes available to buy on a typical day than there were a few years ago.”
Your house search this spring will be impacted by the present housing crisis. Because there aren't many homes available, buyers who prioritize needs over wants will have a better chance of finding a property.
What came first? Obtain a mortgage pre-approval. Pre-approval gives you a better idea of how much you can borrow for a house loan, and that has a big impact on how you'll compile your list. You don't want to fall in love with a house that is out of your price range, after all. Making a list of all the things you desire and need in a home is the best method to rank them after you have a firm grasp on your spending limit.
Here’s a great way to think about them before you begin:
- Must-Haves – If a house doesn’t have these features, it won’t work for you and your lifestyle.
- Nice-To-Haves – These are features you’d love to have but can live without. Nice-to-haves aren’t dealbreakers, but if you find a home that hits all the must-haves and some of these, it’s a contender.
- Dream State – This is where you can really think big. Again, these aren’t features you’ll need, but if you find a home in your budget that has all the must-haves, most of the nice-to-haves, and any of these, it’s a clear winner.
After you've made your list and organized it in a way that suits you, talk to your real estate agent about it. They may assist you in furthering the refinement of the list, offer advice on how to best stay to it, and locate a house in your neighborhood that satisfies your requirements.
Prioritizing what you need in a home is a critical first step in the buying process. If you’re ready to find the one that’s best for you, connect with a local real estate agent.