When you start your new home search, you need to listen to your own heart and your own needs. Between TV shows and the opinions of friends and family, it can quickly become overwhelming to decide what your essential criteria are for what you actually need and want in a new home. Start with an honest conversation with your Realtor about what you need for living space, number of bedrooms, bathrooms, yard and garage areas, plus your ideal home location.

Next, go out to look at the listings your Realtor and you find that are the closest matches to what you have decided you want and need. For this initial round of house hunting, it’s best to just go with you and your Realtor, rather than taking along extended family and friends. This will allow you to really focus on the features you like and the ones you don’t with each property you see. By narrowing your search in this way, it will make it easier and less stressful for you to zero in on 2 or 3 that hit most or all of your criteria.

If possible, it’s best to even leave your children home or with someone you trust, so you can focus on the homes you’re looking at with your Realtor. This can be especially important if there are pets in the home you’re looking at that could be a greater distraction, or even a risk to your children.

Once you find a few potential new homes that you really love, invite the people whose opinions matter most to you to go and see the properties with you. At that point, you can ask them to help you make the final decision between your top 2 or 3. This will help keep your search for a new home simpler and much less stressful!

By Kathy McEnaney