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Tips for Buyers: Separating your Wants and Needs

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(RE/MAX Blog)-When searching for your next home, it is extremely important to distinguish between wants and needs. It is very easy to get caught up in the excitement and carried away with your list of “dream features.” This is when truly defining what you “want” in a home versus what you “must-have” in a home for your lifestyle comes to play.

A “need” should always take precedence over a “want” when it comes to making a big life decision, like purchasing a new home. Below is a list to help you find the right approach during your search for your next home.

1. Make a list. Write out your wants versus your needs. Needs should include things like location, school districts, neighborhoods, budget, number of bedrooms, features, amenities, plumbing and electrical that are updated, lot size, number of garage spaces and HOAs. Wants may include non-essentials, such as the style of the home, remodeled kitchen or baths, decks, pools, hot tubs, flooring material and landscapes.

2. Consult family members. If you’re purchasing a home for more people than yourself, ask your family members about their wants and needs for the home. Your spouse and children may have wants and needs that you are unaware of.

3. Consider how long you plan on staying in your next home. This can help you further determine your wants and needs. If you plan on staying short term, location, value and neighborhood will be important. If you are planning to live in your next home for the long term, think about upcoming life changes. You may want that extra bedroom if you plan on expanding your family.

4. Compromise. Be realistic and ask yourself what makes you happy? If cooking for your family in a large kitchen brings you joy, then make it a need. However, be okay to let go of a big backyard if you want to live in the city. Define what you want and what you absolutely need to be happy in your new home.

Keeping perspective in mind will help you find a home you love!

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