Today’s homebuyers are faced with a myriad of considerations when it comes time to buy. From price to size to acreage, every homebuyer’s needs are different – but several variables remain consistent. If you feel overwhelmed by information overload, consider these three crucially important factors to keep in mind before you buy.


1. Location, Location, Location
Perhaps the most important consideration to keep in mind when buying a new home is its location. You can change a home’s cabinets and paint colors and even its layout, but you can’t change its location. Even if you don’t think you’re buying a “forever” home, buy as if you’ll be staying for about 10 years, the average length of time American homeowners stay in one place. Will the neighborhood suit you well in a decade? What about the school districts? Is the area growing or in a decline? Overlooking any of these critical factors can mean you’ll never be content in your home, even if it’s aesthetically perfect.


2. Livability
Buyers often get caught up in features of a home that are relatively easy to change. Smart builders know that highlighting a home’s best features is the easiest way to help homeowners see themselves there. What’s important to consider is whether the home is livable for your lifestyle. If you love to grill out, you need a lot that’s got plenty of outdoor space. If you’re planning on adding to your family, a multi-purpose room that can transition from playroom to gameroom is a nice add. Layout, not just space, is important too. If the home office is too close to the kitchen, for example, you may not be able to get any work done. Think about how you’ll actually live in a home before you buy.


3. Long Term Value
Your home is probably the biggest investment you’ll ever make. It’s important to choose a house that won’t lose value over time whether a high-crime area, neglectful neighbors, or structural issues are to blame. A few ways to ensure longer-term value include buying from a reputable builder, avoiding the nicest house in the neighborhood, and considering the overall condition and potential of the home itself. While it’s critical to consider your home’s current livability, you should always keep resale in the back of your mind.

Buying a home shouldn’t be stressful, it should be fun! It’s also a lot of work, and paying close attention to the difficult details now will pay dividends later.