616 Realty’s Guide to discovering your dream home

At 616 Realty, the mission is to help people in Michigan find their dream home.  In order to help us help you, you have to know what you are looking for in a dream home!  This includes knowing what architectural style of home you are looking for as well as what items are on your wish list. It also requires that you know where you ideally would like to be located. Use this guide to help you explore these criteria and everything you need to know about your dream home, before you start your search.

Flexibility and patience

AT 616 Realty, we are all about helping you find the perfect home. We have to be honest, the perfect home is often in the eyes of the beholder. So, as a homebuyer, you have to learn to be a little like a Zen Yogi–flexible and patient. These two mindsets will allow you to find a home you love. If you are looking for something very specific, then you will have to be flexible on your timeline and patient in your search. If you are in need of finding a home quickly, you may have to be flexible in the other criteria like location and architectural style. Being open to the possibilities–a.k.a. flexible in your mindset–will allow your home search to be a pleasant one and might just lead you to an unexpected and wonderful place that you may not have even dreamed of…

Architectural style

Consider looking at home magazines and jump on our real estate site to determine what styles of homes suit your personal aesthetic. Try taking this fun quiz from Southern Living to get you started! 

Having a few different style preferences will help us cast a larger net as we look for your dream home. Consider too that many locations have an architectural theme that can be seen throughout a neighborhood. If you have a particular style of home you must have, ask your agent what areas and neighborhoods are known for that style. 

Wish list vs. must have’s

There is an important distinction to be made between what you would like to have in your home and what you must have. If it is your first time buying a home, you can be sure that there will be compromises to the “must have” list even though it seems to imply that they are deal breakers (refer back to the flexibility criteria). Make a two column list of both. 

Here are a few details to consider:

  • Location
  • Number of bedrooms
  • Location of bedrooms
  • Number of bathrooms
  • Large family area/living space
  • Stairs/no stairs
  • Acreage
  • Location of Neighbors
  • Fireplace
  • Green space
  • Fenced yard
  • Large kitchen
  • Basement/no basement
  • A/C
  • Swimming pool

After you have completed the “must have” list, go through and re-evaluate. Put a star next to the ones that are truly deal breakers. If you are a 3-person family, you know you must have three bedrooms in preparation for child number two! But, consider whether or not a basement with no bedrooms can be turned into a three bedroom later down the road… …in other words, keep your mind open and remain flexible. We don’t want you to compromise what you want, in fact, knowing the “must have’s” that remain after closer evaluation, will help us as your agent to understand exactly what you are looking for and weed out the homes that won’t make the cut even before you walk in the door. 

Neighborhood Wish List

As they say, location, location, location. Where your home is located should certainly be at the forefront of your decision. It is always recommended to find the location first and the home second. Finding a home in your ideal location that needs a little work can end up being a better deal than a lovely turnkey home in a less than perfect neighborhood.  But, again, with flexibility, patience, and research, you can weigh the pros and cons of both. Likewise, with an open-mind, you might find a neighborhood that is up-and-coming that will eventually be the location of your dreams. Being flexible with location can allow you to find a home that checks more of your wish list boxes while staying in your budget. 

Considerations for location:

  • How long would your commute be?
  • What schools are nearby?
  • What amenities are in the area?
  • How far is it from the amenities you want?
  • Is it a walking neighborhood?
  • Is it a family-friendly area?
  • Is the area safe?
  • Is there a lot of green space?
  • Are homes spread out? 

The budget…

Ugh. Obviously, this could be number one on your list of criteria, but in order to determine what your dream home is, you have to look at the other criteria first. Then you can focus on a budget and determine what kind of flexibility and patience you will need in finding a home that meets as many of the criteria as possible. Using an online calculator can be a good first step in helping you to determine what you can afford. And, before you really start the hunt, get pre-approved. Getting a number from a bank before you start your home search will help to eliminate the heartache of finding a “perfect” home that you can’t buy. 

Finding your dream home starts with knowing what that dream home looks like and where you’d like to live. Contact us at 616 Realty and let us help.  We’d be honored to help you find your idyllic Michigan home. 

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