House-Hunting for You, Your Spouse and the Kids is an exciting adventure that can be stressful and time-consuming – and we haven’t even factored kids into the equation. Apart from your personal requirements, you must also consider the wants and needs of your children.
Fortunately, there are many ways to make the home buying experience more efficient without attending countless open houses or arguing with the kids about adding a big pool in the new house. Speed up the home buying process by pre-screening houses and knowing your options. Apart from SHOPPING FOR THE BEST MORTGAGE RATE, why not shop with your kids?
Include Your Children in the House Hunting Process
When you’re looking for a house with the kids, you’ll have to wait to involve the children in the process until you’ve narrowed down your choices. Start by searching for houses online. Once you’ve found a couple of potential homes, visit them without the children first then bring them with you if you consider a house a serious contender.
While leaving the children at home during the first tour avoids distractions, you can’t leave them out of the hunt entirely. Involving the kids in the house-hunting process makes the adventure more exciting. Advanced planning can make house-hunting with kids a pleasant experience.
First, if you’re touring houses with a realtor, drive your car since it will be outfitted with baby seats and all the kid-friendly car accessories you need. This removes the need to settle the kids in another car. Also, if the scheduling allows, keep your house tours to one or two homes at a time so the kids won’t get too overwhelmed or bored by the entire process.
By bringing your kids along to see potential homes, you will hit two goals with one action: prepare them for the big move and get their insights on your future home. Although you still have the final say over the final house, your kids will notice things that you don’t. Ideally, the house you choose will be the one everyone likes – including the kids.
Consider the House Layout and Size
If you already have children or are planning to have kids in the near future, a bigger home is the best choice. For example, you’ll want plenty of storage space to store your kid’s sports equipment, toys and books. If you have more wiggle room in your budget, a designated playroom is a perfect addition, especially if you want a space for the kids to spend their excess energy.
Simply put, if you’re set on watching your children grow up in the house, you need to find a home that is big enough to accommodate your family’s future needs.
Another important factor to consider is the floor plan. Does a potential home match your family’s routine and lifestyle? For instance, if you have a newborn, you’d want to be near them at all times. So your new home should have bedrooms that are on the same floor as your child’s.
When searching for a new home, the key things to look for are number of bedrooms, size of the dining and kitchen area and number of bathrooms. Also, ask yourself some questions: would you have enough space to invite relatives and friends? Are the dining area and kitchen big enough to accommodate your extended family? How many bathrooms will you need?
Research the Neighbourhood
When you’re house-hunting, reach out or observe your neighbours. Are there other families living in your potential neighbourhood? If yes, your kids can make friends or live near their classmates. How safe is your neighbourhood? Research the crime rates of the neighbourhood. Online tools like Safewise.com offer commendable recommendations regarding neighbourhood safety. You can also walk around the area to get a feel of your future home.
Check the Overall Safety of Your House
If you have small kids, make sure the home and property are safe or CAN BE EASILY CHILD-PROOFED. For example, if your house has stairs and you have a toddler, this can be a dangerous combination. Make sure that you can gate off the stairs. Securing the stairs is important, especially if you have rambunctious children that can climb onto the railings.If you have large windows the kids can fall out off, consider installing WINDOW SECURITY BARS.
Also, the inside of your home isn’t the only thing you need to worry about. Some homes come with a swimming pool, creek or a small pond. Reduce the risk of drowning by installing a fence around the pool to keep the kids safe.
By taking the time to pre-screen potential homes before bringing the kids with you – and taking note of details that will benefit your family – you can find a home that is perfect for you and the kids.