How to Pick a House

how to pick a house

Choosing your new home is an exciting and overwhelming experience. There’re so many factors to take into consideration, like size, bedrooms, entertainment space, and more. 

There are several things to keep in mind when looking for your first home. Use this article as a checklist of topics to research when you pick a house. These are the most common elements to use for your home search criteria.

Location Matters

The location of your house might be the most important factor to consider. While Los Angeles is very broad, there are numerous cities within the scope of Los Angeles to consider. Options can range from secluded homes in the hills to modern suburban homes in Woodland Hills. The old “location, location, location” motto is evermore true in Los Angeles. The location you choose will drastically affect your daily life, commuting, and your overall lifestyle.  

Think about your daily routine and the places you need to be. How do you’re your day structured? Does that include commuting for an hour each day? Shorter commutes can drastically reduce stress. It also frees up your time with your family and loved ones. Keep in mind your workplace or business location when choosing locations. Traffic is something to plan around.

Close access to public transportation might be another advantage for you. Public transportation is usually more consistent when traveling because bus and train times have been carefully planned out. This can help you better plan your day around commuting.

Safety and peace of mind should be taken into account when deciding on a location. Research crime rates and talk to local realtors like Brenda to get a better sense of neighborhood safety. Don’t think twice about leaving your house without looking into the areas you’re considering.

Neighborhood Vibes

Beyond the house itself, its neighborhood plays a crucial role in your overall happiness and satisfaction. The various neighborhoods in LA offer something unique to them. This is a mix between the atmosphere and overall vibe of the area. Pick a house that suits your personality and your future family plans.

Consider the facilities and/or amenities that are available in the area. Are there parks, shopping centers, and restaurants to choose from nearby? The more options you have access to has been shown to increase overall happiness.

If you’re serious about a certain neighborhood, walk around for a day. Talk to the locals, walk into the shops, and eat at the restaurants. See if you feel a sense of belonging. Observe the interactions around you and imagine yourself being a part of the community. This might be your support system in the future. Does it feel like a good fit for your family?

Analyzing Traffic Patterns

Traffic congestion can be a significant source of stress and can greatly impact your daily routine. Before finalizing a house, study the traffic patterns in the area during peak hours and weekends. Be sure to note the busy streets and highway access relative to the area you want. This will play a role during rush hour.

Choosing a house in an area with quiet streets and minimal traffic is key. This will save you valuable time and be much less noisy. Your daily commute will also be more manageable.

School Districts Matter

If you have a family now or are planning one in the future, your school district is a very important choice. The education in Los Angeles ranges significantly. It’s crucial to do extra research into school districts around average grades, pass/fail rates, and more. For the most part, suburban towns like West Hills and Woodland Hills have some of the best school districts.

A strong school district not only ensures great education but also adds to the resale value of a house. Consider the school district you choose to be a further investment into the area you settle down.

Downtown, Countryside, or Suburban?

The setting of your new house is another essential aspect to choose from. Think of the lifestyle you want to live when you consider each option. While there are many pros and cons, one should stand out.

Downtown living offers convenience and a vibrant atmosphere. Living close to the local downtown makes dining and entertainment options more accessible. This also means walking and biking should be convenient ways to get around. Living near downtown also comes with higher living costs and smaller spaces. Noise can be a factor as well.  

If you pick a house in the countryside, you can expect more peace and tranquility. Living in the countryside might be ideal if you enjoy open spaces, natural surroundings, and a slower pace of life. However, consider the distance from urban amenities and the potential for longer commutes.

Suburban areas often strike a balance between the two. They offer a more relaxed atmosphere with the same access to amenities and schools. This is why it’s a popular choice for younger families. The amenities offered will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood.

Pick a House Within Your Budget

This might seem obvious, but many people stretch their finances to afford the home of their dreams. Budget is the deciding factor when purchasing a home; make sure it’s a wise choice. A house can have everything you’re looking for, but if it’s out of your budget, then it’s a no-go. 

Take time to dive into your budget. Analyze your income, taxes, and expenses of living before considering a mortgage. Buying a house should not put a huge financial burden on you. You should still be able to live comfortably based on your income bracket. Make sure not to overstretch your finances.

Narrow your search to properties that align with your budget while meeting your other requirements. A well-planned budget ensures you can comfortably afford your new home without compromising other essential aspects of your life.

Evaluate the Property’s Condition

When looking at potential houses, carefully evaluate the condition of the property. Consider factors like the age of the house, any required repairs or renovations, and the overall structural integrity. A thorough inspection by a professional can help you identify any hidden issues and avoid unexpected expenses in the future.

Future Development Plans

Research any future development plans in the area surrounding the house. New developments can significantly impact your living experience. Check with local authorities or real estate agents for information on upcoming projects that might affect the neighborhood’s landscape and overall value.

Be aware of future development plans, as it could mean a higher or lower resale value for your house. The house you buy is an investment, so you must treat it as such.

Resale Value

While you may plan to stay in your new house for a long time, it’s essential to consider its potential resale value. Market conditions and the overall appeal of the location can influence the property’s future worth.

Properties in neighborhoods with strong demand, good school districts, and access to essential amenities tend to hold their value better over time. If you decide to move, investing in a house with good resale value can provide you with a financial safety net.

Trust Your Instincts

Don’t underestimate the power of your instincts. Trust them when you pick your house. Go downtown, talk to the locals, and get a feel for the area. Usually, your first instincts are true. You just can’t explain them yet. If all factors of a house point to buying it and your instincts tell you not to, then don’t. Usually, those feelings don’t dissipate but grow. But if the home and area resonate with you, consider that too.

Your gut feeling about a particular property is usually an excellent indicator of whether it will make you happy and comfortable in the long run.

The Wrap Up

Choosing the perfect house requires careful consideration of multiple factors. From the location and neighborhood to the setting and affordability, each aspect plays a vital role in making the right decision. 

By analyzing all the elements and trusting your instincts, you can find a place you and your family can call home for years. Let Brenda help you find your new home!


Have a question? Email Brenda