When you start shopping for a home, you probably have a very specific image of what you would like that home to look like. You probably also see the perfect neighborhood surrounding that perfect home. Every buyer sets out with an image of the house they want to own, but in reality compromises are often necessary in order to stay within your budget. So which is more important; home vs. neighborhood?
Compromising On The House
There may be certain things that are non-negotiable when it comes to your new home, such as the number of bedrooms or a two-car garage. But as you take a look at the homes that are within your budget, you may discover that it is not likely you will get everything on your wish list. But the great thing about owning a home is that you have the power to remodel it at any time. Once you are in your new home, you can renovate or even add on if necessary to create the home you really want. And if you have managed to stay below your budget, you will even have the extra money each month to make some of those changes.
Compromising On The Neighborhood
So you’ve found the house of your dreams, but the neighborhood isn’t precisely what you were hoping for. Too much traffic, some houses that are becoming run down, or many other issues can mar the area your house is in. In most cases, you will have to accept that you cannot change the neighborhood, and this means that you have to decide if the problems are things you can live with or not.
In some cases, buying in a run-down neighborhood can be a strategic move. If many people are buying up the houses and improving them, then your home might one day be worth a lot more. However, you must realize that this is a risk and it might not work out that way.
Another thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to buy the nicest house in the neighborhood, you may have trouble selling it down the line. If other houses in the area are available for less, why would anyone buy your expensive house to get into the area?
So Which Matters More?
In the long run, when it comes down to home vs neighborhood, you should choose the right neighborhood. While you can change your house for the better, you can’t count on your neighborhood changing; in fact, it might get worse. So choose the best neighborhood you can afford even if the house there isn’t perfect.
If you would like to discuss which neighborhood is best for you, please contact me. Seattle Met also has a great collection of article on different neighborhood. Link here.