There is something so freeing and comforting about the thought of having your very own place to call home – one to decorate, nurture and create many memories in with your friends and family.

Buying a new house requires a big investment possibly the biggest you’ll ever make – and, as such, it is extremely important for you to make the right decisions. The purchasing process can be very daunting, particularly for first-time buyers with minimal experience; professional guidance is vital to ensure you have covered all your bases in securing everything for a bright, stress-free future in your new home.

If your main goal for this year is to find a house to turn into your dream abode, there are a few factors you can start considering before getting down to the nitty-gritty details of the purchasing process. There are many important things to look out for when shopping around for a house, and it’s an exciting time, but check out these three factors you should study before making the leap.

Location, Location, Location

Depending on our work and family situation, we all tend to have specific requirements as to the location of our new home. With commuting for work or school being one of the most stressful aspects in our day to day routine, finding a home close to the office or a good children’s school will definitely prove advantageous – but is it realistic?

Property prices in most suburban areas are very steep because they are the most sought after. They are the perfect little haven away from big city life,  but close enough to commute without taking too many hours out of your day. Be sure to do your research prior to settling on a specific location to avoid possible disappointments and, most importantly – don’t become disheartened! Somewhere out there, the perfect house is waiting for you in the ideal neighbourhood.

Soundscapes & Security

Real estate agents and prospective buyers like to schedule their viewings for early morning or afternoon, as these hours provide the best possible light. While day-time viewing is a must that will aid you in making an informed decision, it is wise to visit the house of interest during different hours of the day to get a feel of what it might be like to truly live in it.

You can’t get a realistic idea of what it feels like to be living in a particular house based on one single viewing – especially considering that, most of the property’s neighbours will be working during morning and afternoon hours, and traffic will be at its calmest. Put your mind at ease by scheduling a few night-time and weekend viewings ensuring you have not chosen a house that happens to be situated next to loud, obnoxious neighbours, in front of a residential street known for reckless drivers and poor street-lighting. These are all important factors that will determine your comfort in your new home.

Honest Neighbours

No one will know the area better than your prospective neighbours. Reach out to them and ask them about their personal experiences. Depending on how long they have lived in the area, they will be able to offer you honest and insightful information about the neighbourhood and possibly even your house. Should the previous owners have had any problems during their occupancy, chances are their formers neighbours will have known about it.

You will also get first-hand information about their own homes which will give you a better idea of any issues that might arise in future. For example, if your direct neighbour’s basement is prone to flooding or the walls are particularly sensitive to humidity, chances are your home could be affected. A ten-minute chat with the locals could save your years of grief!