Before you begin searching for a home, it’s always helpful to think about your needs both now and in the future. And if you have any questions about the home-buying process or different types of real estate, don’t hesitate to call or e-mail.
Following are some things to consider when you’re deciding which type of home to buy:
• Location. Do you want to live in a city, town or in the countryside? How long will your work commute be? Where will your children attend school and how will they get there? Are you close to amenities?
• Size requirements. Do you need several bedrooms, more than one bathroom, space for a home office, a two-car garage?
• Special features. Do you want air conditioning, storage or hobby space, a fireplace, a swimming pool? Do you have family members with special needs? Do you want special features to save energy, enhance indoor air quality and reduce environmental impact?
• Lifestyles and stages. Do you plan to have children? Do you have teenagers who will be moving away soon? Are you close to retirement? Will you need a home that can accommodate different stages of life?
New Versus Resale Homes
When thinking about your ideal home, the first thing you should consider is whether you want a previously-owned home (often called a resale) or a new home.
Some things to consider with a new home include: up-to-date designs that take into account the latest trends, materials and features; you may be able to upgrade or choose certain items such as siding, flooring, cabinets, plumbing and electrical fixtures; schools, shopping malls and other services may not be complete for years; and you may have to pay extra if you want to add a fireplace, plant trees and sod or pave your driveway. Make sure you know exactly what’s included in the price of your home.
Some things to consider with a resale home include: easy access to services, since it’s likely established in a neighbourhood with schools, shopping malls and other services; may have extras like fireplaces, a finished basement or swimming pool; and you may need to redecorate, renovate or do major repairs such as replacing the roof, windows and doors.
Deciding Which Type of Home to Buy
There are many types of homes to choose from and each has its advantages and disadvantages. Think about your needs before making a decision, and don’t forget to look beyond the interior walls. The environment surrounding your home can be as important as the environment within.
Following are some different types of homes from which to choose:
Single-Family Detached – A home containing one dwelling unit that stands alone and sits on its own lot, thereby offering a greater degree of privacy.
Semi-Detached – A single-family home that is joined to another one by a common wall. It can offer many of the advantages of a single-family detached home and is usually less expensive to buy and maintain.
Row House or Townhouse – Many similar single-family homes, side-by-side, separated by common walls. They can be freehold, condominiums or rental units. They offer less privacy than a single-family detached home but still provide a separate outdoor space. These homes can cost less to buy and maintain – but they can also be large, luxury units.
Link or Carriage Home – Houses joined by garages or carports, which provide access to the front and back yards. Builders sometimes join basement walls so that link houses appear to be single-family homes on small lots. These houses can be less expensive than single-family detached homes.
Condos/Stratas – A condo/strata is a form of ownership, not a type of construction. Condos/stratas can be high-rise residential buildings, townhouse complexes, individual houses and low-rise residential buildings.
Regardless of the type of home you decide to buy, answers to your questions are just a phone call or e-mail away!