*This is a sponsored post
Hey y’all, sorry it’s been a while. I have been in the very busy stage of trying to find a new house. That’s right – I’m moving and it is hectic, as anyone who has been house hunting knows. Unfortunately, I haven’t found the dream house yet, but the search is on. Luckily for me, I’ve brushed up on some house hunting knowledge and compiled it here for you. And I promise, this is way better than an episode of Property Brothers, because my budget is realistic and a little more down-to-earth than what we see on those shows.
- Make a list of what you must have in your house.
For me, that list is pretty simple, I need a decent sized kitchen because I love to cook and bake sweet treats, as y’all have seen on my blog, which means I need the space to do so. I also think the kitchen is the heart of the home, so I want it to be in a central location, something that is open and easily reached by all. Same thing with the floor plan – I hate too many walls because it makes me feel trapped, so I want to have plenty of natural light and a nice open floor plan. Nothing too crazy yet, right? Next up – decent sized bedrooms and bathrooms, preferably no carpet, but if it is in the house, I’ll rip it up. There is no problem there. Finally, I have got to have a laundry room in the house. Others know that many houses put it in the garage, and I just cannot stand that. So for me, those are my must-haves when I’m house hunting. Other things aren’t as important. I’d love a front porch, but it’s not a necessity, so if I don’t get it, I’ll survive.
- Know what is a deal-breaker for you.
Again, this goes back to that first point. If you have to have a nice kitchen, you need to make sure you have that. If you do not make your wants or needs a priority, you may be back on the house hunt earlier than you wanted to, if you go with a space that doesn’t work for you.
- Research the neighborhood.
I’m looking in several different cities, all in one area at this point, and since I’m not sure about all of them, I do my research. In some cases, I ask friends who know the area and live around there for advice about whether they’ve heard good or bad things about the neighborhood and area. Then, if I don’t know anyone that lived there, I pull it up on a map. That’s right guys, old school. Not a real map, a digital one, but you know what I mean. That gives me an idea of what’s around the area. I can also look at local schools in the area, as that can sometimes help you gauge if it’s a good area or not.
- Know what to look for.
There are some obvious red flags when you tour a home that you have to keep an eye on. First for me, is looking at the outside. Are there any obvious signs of damage, whether it be wind or water or anything else? If not, so far so good. Next, let’s look up at the ceiling when you get in the house. Check for any discoloration or even fresh paint in only a few areas, that could indicate they are trying to hide a stain or leak that occurred. Look at the walls for the same thing – freshly patched or painted sections could indicate that there was some damage to the wall and they did a hasty repair. Check the tile flooring and make sure it’s laid evenly. I was just looking at one house, that the tile was so uneven my shoe got caught in it, and I nearly tripped. Also, notice the smell. People have joked that my nose is similar to that of a Bloodhound. If there is a nasty smell, I will find it, and I am always very suspicious when there are multiple candles in each room. Of course, everyone wants their house to show well, and smell nice, but too many candles can be a bad sign. I’ve also caught the smell of smoke before, and that stuff can go into the walls and the carpet, so even if it’s just a faint whiff, if that’s a no-go for you, take your offer and leave.
- Find a good realtor.
This is key. If you and your realtor don’t mesh, or if your realtor is not showing you the houses you want, it might be time to find a new one. A good realtor is someone who will listen to what you want (so this means that you also need to be verbal and give them a good description about what you are looking for. The relationship goes both ways!) and make sure to suggest houses that fit what you want and what you are looking for. This person should be almost as invested as you, and won’t try to just sell you the first house you’re looking at. It takes time to find the right house for yourself, and it’s important that your realtor doesn’t try to rush you into a bad decision.
I can tell you from experience how important that last one is. I’ve gone through a few realtors, mainly because they decided that they wanted to show me houses they wanted to sell, and didn’t really care if it fit the requirements I was looking for. They would also get angry when I wouldn’t make an offer above budget, and that’s just wrong.
With Erin King Jax Historic Realty, you won’t run into that issue. If you’re in the Jacksonville area, and especially if you are searching for a historic house (which who isn’t – they are beautiful), then this is the realtor for you. Erin King is a realtor who is a Best of Zillow Realtor. He specializes in historic homes and neighborhoods. Not only that, but he’s been buying and selling these homes and helping people find their new home for 20 years now. That’s a pretty good track record. Erin holds an MBA with an economics focus, so you can rest easy that he has plenty of experience and education to help find the perfect historic home. Not only that, but he has a 1924 home in Avondale, which is a beautiful area, and he renovated it to fit his needs. He brings his clients not only the expertise he has on buying and selling these historic homes, but also has a team of contractors he offers for them to use for the renovations to bring these houses up to the modern standards they need, without losing the historic value.
According to Erin King, it is currently a seller’s market, so if you were considering making a change, now may be the best time to do it. Until then, wish me luck on house hunting!