Buying a house is always a large commitment, no matter what age. However, in each stage of life, buying a house can mean different things. It an be your first, your last, your family vacation home. So we decided to put together a series of posts on tips to buying a house at various life stages: first home, growing families and empty nesters. We know there are other stages to life, but these are the ones we are talking about.
Today, we talk about the growing-family home.
If you were lucky enough to move into a home that has enough room for your future three kids, two dogs and hockey equipment, you get the day off from lessons.
If not, read on.
You most likely found a cute bungalow that was just great for you and your significant other. It has two bedrooms, one that was an office but is now converted to a nursery for Jack. But with Jill on the way, or possibly sharing sleeping space with Jack, things are feeling over crowded.
Plus, Tank the German Shepherd is no longer a small bundle of awkward limbs. He is a well-built machine that has outgrown your small lot.
Know what is important for YOUR future
A growing family has the same types of priorities: more space. However, where that extra space is needed is alway different. Think of your needs vs. wants for outdoor space, bedrooms, private space for mom and dad as well as storage. You can never have enough storage when you have children.
Do your kids like to kick the soccer ball around? Do you like to move one acre of land every week? Do you like to entertain? At this point, you know what you need in terms of space. It is important that your space fits your lifestyle.
Your kids will need to be schooled and if you aren’t going to home school them, you will need to know about the various schools in different areas so you know where to move. Your real estate agent can’t legally tell you what schools are the best. That is up to you to figure out.
Your budget is a little different. Growing a family and having children usually means a growing list of expenses as well. Estimate monthly expenses along with a mortgage payment to ensure all financial commitments can be reasonably met.
Plus, you will have future college loans and retirement savings to think about.
How many cars do you have? You will need room for that plus bikes, lawnmowers, snowblowers and other toys.
When you want to move? Sometimes it is best to move during the summer when the kids are out of school, but you might face some heavy competition during the spring. If you don’t have a timeline, it can make it easier to find the right home. However, that can also make you drag out the home-buying process since you have no urgency.
Will you need to sell your house before you move?
Having a home-sale contingency in your offer can weaken it, but that shouldn’t scare you. Know if you can sell your house and move in with neighbor/family or rent while you search for a new abode.
With everything that is going on, it may seem overwhelming to think about the step after this step. But your real estate investment has a lasting impact on your finances. When it comes to downsizing, will you want to sell this home? Or would you rather stay in it and have it be an inheritance? These aren’t as pressing, but it’s always good to think about.
Okay, that is a shorter lesson than before.
Do you have any questions? Can we help you find a new home?
Let us know.