As a first-time home buyer, you’ll be quite confused, enthusiastic and easy to impress or even overwhelm. Unfortunately, this is something that the most experienced real estate agents will know how to turn against you. What you need is a systemic, unbiased approach or a method to determine whether the home is right for you. This brings us to one of the most difficult questions to answer – how can you possibly be unbiased when it comes to choosing something as personal as your living space? Well, there are a couple of ways to get as close to this as possible and the most reliable of them is to have a checklist. Here’s how to make one.

How much you can afford

A lot of people that no price that you have to pay is too great in order to get a house of your dreams. Sure, it’s a decision that will affect your lifestyle in ways you can’t even imagine. After all, you’ll move into a place where you’ll spend every single day for years, decades or even for the rest of your life. Therefore, every single thing about it will affect you.

However, the same goes for the purchase, as well. It will take years and decades for you to pay off the place, which is why the annual credit rate affects your lifestyle, as well. Keep in mind that getting yourself in too much debt can have an effect on your health, as well as on your stress levels. It might make you give up some of your other plans, due to your currently troublesome financial status.

Look for flaws

It is in human nature to hope, yet, this hope can sometimes be a double-edged blade. Whenever you see a new place for sale, you’ll get your hopes up that this might be it. In an ideal scenario, the first home you enter would be an ideal place for you since, let’s face it, no one enjoys doing endless home tours. So, if you’re already hoping/expecting that this place will be it, you focus on the good things instead of looking for flaws. This is a fatal mistake.

What you need to do instead is look for problems like faulty wiring, faulty plumbing, poor drainage, bad gutters and more. Sure, expecting to see flaws everywhere is not a pleasant mindset, nonetheless, you can’t afford to be careless, hopeful or reckless in this situation. Being a bit pessimistic is a much safer hope of action than being too optimistic.

Hire a professional

One of the biggest mistakes that you can make when meeting a real estate agent is to prepare to defend yourself against hard sell techniques. Most people know how to recognize and resist this, however, there are so many tricks that a professional salesperson can do in order to affect your subconscious side and make you want to buy the place. We’re talking about things as simple as dimming the lights in order to make the place feel warmer and cozier, brew some coffee just before you arrive in order to make it feel more like home and apply similar tricks.

This is why you need to hire some help, someone who knows all of these tricks and understands the local housing market well enough to see past them. For instance, it’s by far the safest for a person buying a home in NSW to look for reliable Sydney buyer agents to team up with. In this way, you get a lot less biased estimate of the true value of the property that you’re currently considering. Due to the fact that this is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make (if not the biggest investment) getting some professional assistance is supposed to get you a great ROI.

What else is included in the price

If you’re buying a second-hand property, it’s quite possible that the previous owner has left some of their belongings like a fridge or a washing machine. If they’re included in the price, this is definitely something worth considering. Yet, not everything they’ve left over will be a plus. Any damage that they’ve made to the property is yours to fix, which means that the cost of the property may not be the total cost. Try putting all of this to paper in order to make an estimate of the total value of your purchase.

Planning for the future

This last part is probably the most complex and the most abstract. You see, the size of your family may change in the future, which means that you need to look at the potential of the place, as well. Not just its current state. Second, just because the place doesn’t currently have a home office or a home gym, doesn’t mean that it won’t have one in the future. Sometimes, you need to look at the place for what it could become instead of just observing it for what it is at the moment.

In conclusion

The reasons why this checklist is so efficient as a method is due to the fact that it allows you to compare various homes to one another based on their advantages and disadvantages. For instance, a subjective advantage of one home could be so overwhelming that you might feel inclined to overlook all its flaws in other areas. That is, of course, means that the odds that you’ll make a decision you’ll later regret might drastically increase. In order to avoid it, you need to set clear, objective and measurable criteria. This essential checklist should help you make this a lot easier to manage.

Author's Bio: 

Emily is a business psychologist. Researching, exploring and writing are her favourite things to do. Besides that, she loves animals and music.