How to Choose a Home to Meet My Family's Needs When Buying a House

What Works for You

Lakewood Balmoral Historic District
Lakewood Balmoral Historic District | Source

Choosing the Right Home for You

One of the first things we all consider when buying a house is if we want to live in the country, the city, or the suburbs. I learned a home buying lesson about this with the first house I sold. My buyers wanted a one-story house in the country. We spent several days looking, but for what they could afford, the pickings were slim.

Backyard Golfing

Choosing the Right Home

One of my co-workers suggested that I show them her listing--a two-story in the city . I said, "There is no possible way they would be interested in that house." She insisted, "Just show it to them." Without telling my buyers, I pulled in front of the house and said, "I know this is different from what we've been looking at, but I think you should see it for the sake of comparison." It was a big, roomy house that came with an extra lot. Guess what? They bought it!

Las Vegas

Buying a House: What can go Wrong

Where to Buy a Home

Today, it is much easier to know where the houses we can afford are located because of the Internet. Still, there are some things a home buyer needs to think about.

  1. Land is expensive. You will get less house if you get more yard or land. Are you willing to make that trade-off?
  2. Having a golf-course-sized backyard, means a lot more maintenance. Will you be cutting all of that grass or paying someone to do it?
  3. Living in the country means you have to go farther to get to all of the conveniences you have in the city, and gas costs are going up. Do you work in the country?
  4. City dwellers sometimes like to get out of the smog and noise into the clean, country air. Fewer people may mean finding fewer people who share your interests, fewer children to play with yours. Would a larger lot closer to the city work better than living in a rural community?

The Stairs


One-Story or Two-Story House

When I was selling houses, I would often find that a one-story homeowner would want to buy a two-story house, and vice versa. How do you choose the right home for you? Both styles have disadvantages and advantages.

  1. One-story houses tend to be a little more expensive per square foot because they work better for more people, and they sit on more land. Older people can't do stairs well, and parents with very young children don't want to be running up and down steps to get to the kitchen in the middle of the night for bottles or glasses of water. So, for these two groups one-stories work well.
  2. A two-story does work well when the children get a little older, so that they can be awake with friends downstairs while mom and dad sleep upstairs, or mom and dad downstairs with them up. Noise can be less of a problem. But, not being able to hear your children upstairs may be a problem.
  3. With our one-story we get the convenience of not having to climb steps as often. If you have small children it is both a plus and a minus. The minus is that toys seem to travel into the main living areas more easily, but it is easier to put them back.
  4. Do you keep your windows open at night? You get a better breeze if your bedroom is upstairs, and you can feel a litter safer. No one can just walk up to your two-story bedroom window and climb through.
  5. Are you getting older? Do you have elderly parents who visit? Then, having a one-story or at least one bedroom and bathroom downstairs may be what you need.

Finding the Right House

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