Buying A House - Add Your Camera To My Home Buying Checklist
Buying a house is all about comparison. In order to compare homes it is wise to have a system. Most likely, you have narrowed down your search to homes similar in price. Now you need this additional criteria other than price to avoid confusion. Good luck and happy home shopping.
Buying a house requires an easy solution.
It's typical to jump into previewing houses before developing a plan for comparison. And it can cost us.
You probably know what follows. You walk through six or seven open houses. But within minutes of walking back through your front door, your memory becomes muddled. You saw one house too many and can't recall which floor plan was best.
How can you keep track of the homes?
You will find buying a house is all about comparison. For most home shoppers, the search for homes begins with affordability. In fact if you have been preapproved by your mortgage lender, most of the homes you preview will likely fall into a similar price range.
It is becoming clear to you that further evaluation is necessary.
In order to compare homes it is wise to have a system. The Department of Housing and Urban Development, or HUD as it is commonly called, has created its own score card. However before I go any further, I strongly suggest adding a digital camera onto your home shopping procedure.
Continuing this thought, you are about to tour a few homes with your Realtor. To remember each house, use a camera to photograph important attributes. This way you can analyze comparable pictures.
As soon as you pull up to the curb, take a picture of the house. It is important to photograph the layout of the house.
Second take photos of the yards and any extra features about each house that you like as well as dislike.
Don't forget problem spots too.
Keep in mind that if you are systematic in your approach, you will be able to easily compare pictures of the major rooms of each house, the yards, extra features you thought were beneficial, and potential problems.
Now you need the HUD Home Buying Scorecard. Print out the pictures for each house and attach them to your score card.
Have you heard of the HUD Home Buying Scorecard? It is a home buying checklist designed to remind you of important features in each home and to score each feature with a good, average, or poor score.
Before you go on tour with your Realtor, print out or copy several HUD Scorecards so that you have one for each individual house. At the top write the address and list price for each home you are previewing.
Basically the scorecard highlights features from 4 important categories that everyone buying a house needs to consider.
In a nutshell, the initial section covers aspects such as floor plans and fireplaces to yard space and energy efficiency. Score each one.
The following section compares surrounding environment such as traffic noise or the number and type of pets allowed.
Equally important, schools are the third category itemizing questions of age, condition, reputation, and curriculum.
Now use this system to analyze. Clip the pictures to corresponding scorecards. Next compare the photos and scorecard of one house to another. You will be able to easily analyze and decide which house is best for you.
Who says buying a house has to be confusing? Good luck and happy shopping!
Always consult your real estate professional before taking pictures within a private residence.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kate Ford, the mortgage insider at Get Your Best Mortgage Rate has been helping homeowners and home buyers for over 20 years. Discover more of Kate's tips for buying a house and easily print your home buying scorecard here.