Shopping on line for a home allows you to save time and avoid unnecessary home tours. You can narrow your choices to homes that have a floor plan, size, and amenities that fit your household and your lifestyle.
It’s a good idea at a time when entering a stranger’s home might be a worrisome activity.
But remember – no matter how perfect a house might be, you will live in the neighborhood, not just the house. And MLS entries don’t tell you what you need to know. That’s why, before scheduling a home tour, it’s a good idea to do a drive by.
When you visit a neighborhood you can first look to see if the general upkeep and “pride of ownership” is in keeping with your own. And, while your agent is not legally allowed to share demographic details, you can get your own sense of who inhabits the neighborhood.
If you have children, you might prefer to live where they’ll have the opportunity for neighborhood friendships. If you’re a senior citizen you may or may not want to reside in a neighborhood filled with youngsters.
If church is important to you, you can drive around to see what’s available within a few miles. Meanwhile, you can learn about nearby schools, shopping, medical services, recreation activities, dining establishments, night life, dog parks, etc. You alone know what’s important to your lifestyle.
Check the commuting routes and traffic patterns to determine how much time you’d spend on the road each day. Get out of your car and listen to the sounds of the neighborhood. Can you hear traffic or noise from nearby business establishments? Are there dogs that bark nonstop? Is the house under a flight path to a nearby airport?
Last but not least, check the views. If you purchase this house will you be looking out at something pleasant or unpleasant?
When you’ve decided that the neighborhood suits you and you love what you see about the house on line, it’s time for a tour.