Proper planning is a pre-requisite if you want to succeed in any project. It is not different when you are buying a house. A home buying checklist ensures you don’t waste time when making the purchase. Also, you will avoid situations whereby you notice important things you had forgotten about when you have already signed the papers. The earlier you start making the list the better because you’ll have enough time to update the checklist until every crucial detail is captured. Additionally, this list will help you crosscheck whether all the items you had in mind have been met before you commit to buying a particular one. Some of the things you should include in a home buying checklist include:
Do you need a closed or open layout? What is available?
What kind of flooring do you prefer? Carpet, tile, and wood are the most popular.
How much natural light does the room receive?
Do you need a ceiling fan or skylights?
Does the house have a fireplace?
How many bedrooms do you need?
Are they downstairs or upstairs? Can the basement be used as a bedroom?
How large are the bedrooms?
Do the bedrooms have closets? How big are the closets and are they walk-in or sliding door?
Do they have enough natural light?
Does each room have a ceiling fan?
What kind of light fixtures are in the room?
How many bathrooms does the house have? Are they full bathroom or half?
Do they have showers only or are there bathtubs as well?
Does the master bedroom have an egn suite bathroom?
How is the ventilation in the bathrooms? Do they have fans or windows?
Is the storage space in the bathroom enough? Do they have below-sink storage, a medicine cabinet, and additional wall-cabinets?
Are the faucets fully functional? Check for signs of leakage.
Can you see any evidence of mold or mildew?
How much counter space do you have in the kitchen?
Is the storage space enough? Check the storage cabinets and whether there is a pantry.
What materials are the countertops made of? You can have laminate, marble, tile or granite.
What flooring does the kitchen have?
Do the kitchen appliances need to be replaced? Take note of their age.
Does the kitchen come with a stove? Is it an electric or gas stove and do you have to pay for that separately?
Is the refrigerator included in the purchase?
Check whether you’ll have a built-in microwave, dishwasher, and refrigerator and whether they are part of the purchase.
How is the kitchen sink? Does it have a spray head, an extendable nozzle, garbage disposal or a water filter system?
Are there electrical or power outlets on the kitchen island?
Is there enough dining area in the kitchen?
Can you easily access the kitchen from the living room or the dining room?
Do you have a laundry room? Where is it at?
How is its flooring?
Does it have enough storage space?
Does it have a washer and dryer? Are these built-in and included in the purchase?
How long will it be before you have to replace the washer and the dryer?
Does the basement have proper ventilation? Is this achieved using fans or the window are enough
Can you see any signs of mold or mildew in the basement?
Any signs of flooding or water damage you can detect?
What is the height of the room?
Are the walls and ceiling finished?
How is the flooring of the basement?
Is there a garage in the property?
What is the size of the garage?
Can you access the garage directly from the house?
Does it have cabinets or any additional storage space?
How is the flooring?
Any cracks on the flooring?
Is the garage door working properly?
Do you have a front porch and how demanding is the maintenance process?
Do you have a backyard? If yes, is it landscaped?
Do you have a balcony or a deck in the backyard?
Does the property have a patio cover? How much sun does it receive?
Is the patio big enough to accommodate some furniture?
Does the outdoor space have a built-in grill? Is it electric, propane or gas. Is it working?
Do you have a pool in the property? Is it above ground or in-ground?
Does the backyard have a fence?
Does the property have a garden?
What kind of view will you have from each room and even outdoors?
How is the roof? Any leaks?
Do you have to repaint the house?
How is the plumbing system?
Is the electrical system up to code?
Do you have an office space?
Does the house have central heating or central air?
How strong is the house foundation?
Is the drainage system built to handle a storm?
Are the windows dual or single pane? Are they working properly?
Other things to consider
The stress that comes with living in an area with serious security problems will suck up the joy of being a homeowner. Crime reports for every region are now online. You may also call the local police station for more information about the security of the neighborhood you wish to move to.
How affordable are the houses in the region? You don’t want to sink deeper in debt just because the perfect house was in a neighborhood that is outside your budget but you still went ahead to make the purchase.
Ask your realtor about the local real estate market. You want to buy in a neighborhood where the value of homes keeps going up. Consider how quickly the homes in the area sell as well. This information will be important when the time to sell the house comes. Don’t buy in a neighborhood with many foreclosures.
Check whether there are good bars, coffee shops, restaurants, and grocery stores nearby. You won’t have to drive for miles to shop or catch up with your friends after work.