When ​you’re ​ready ​to ​buy ​your ​first ​home ​there ​are ​a ​number ​of things ​that ​come ​to ​mind ​from ​how ​much ​money ​you’ll ​need ​to where ​exactly ​you ​want ​to ​live.

You’ve ​likely ​already ​put ​together a ​list ​of ​all ​of ​your ​“must-haves” ​for ​the ​actual ​house, ​but ​you’ll also ​want ​to ​consider ​how ​that ​new ​home ​will ​fit ​into ​your lifestyle.

Moving ​is ​a ​big ​deal ​and ​your ​first ​home ​should ​enhance ​your lifestyle, ​not ​detract ​from ​it. ​When ​making ​the ​decision ​of ​which home ​to ​buy ​it’s ​critical ​that ​you ​look ​at ​how ​that ​home ​will ​work in ​your ​everyday ​life.

Here ​are ​five ​lifestyle ​considerations ​for ​buying ​your ​first ​home:

#1. ​Location, ​Location, ​Location

There’s ​a ​reason ​the ​“location, ​location, ​location” ​mantra ​is ​so widely ​used ​in ​real ​estate. ​Location ​matters, ​and ​not ​just ​for ​the obvious ​reasons. ​Sure, ​you ​want ​to ​consider ​the ​resale ​value ​of the ​area ​or ​the ​property ​taxes ​and ​school ​district, ​but ​it’s ​the ability ​and ​ease ​with ​which ​you ​can ​accomplish ​day-to-day ​tasks that ​can ​really ​make ​or ​break ​a ​location.

For ​example, ​if ​you ​currently ​live ​close ​to ​work ​and ​are considering ​a ​location ​further ​away ​for ​your ​first ​home, ​this ​will impact ​your ​lifestyle. ​More ​time ​spent ​commuting ​can ​have ​an impact ​on ​your ​schedule. ​Whether ​it’s ​being ​able ​to ​pick ​up ​the kids ​from ​daycare, ​do ​some ​shopping ​or ​making ​time ​to ​get ​to the ​gym ​or ​out ​for ​a ​run, ​all ​the ​little ​things ​in ​life ​take ​time.

It’s ​not ​just ​about ​commuting ​to ​work. ​Think ​about ​if ​there ​are other ​places ​you ​go ​to ​regularly, ​and ​how ​each ​possible ​home location ​works ​with ​that.

If ​you ​currently ​have ​children ​or ​are ​planning ​on ​having ​kids ​in the ​future, ​there ​are ​additional ​considerations. ​Are ​there ​schools in ​close ​proximity ​or ​will ​children ​need ​to ​travel ​to ​and ​from school ​on ​a ​daily ​basis? ​Are ​there ​suitable ​activities ​for ​kids nearby? ​Choosing ​a ​location ​that’s ​child-friendly ​will ​provide ​you with ​flexibility ​and ​convenience ​over ​time.

#2. ​Recreation ​and ​Amenities

How ​do ​you ​like ​to ​spend ​your ​time? ​Are ​you ​outdoorsy? ​A foodie? ​Someone ​who ​loves ​to ​pop ​down ​to ​the ​local ​stores ​to window ​shop?

When ​choosing ​your ​first ​home, ​finding ​a ​place ​that ​enables ​you to ​not ​only ​continue ​with ​many ​of ​your ​normal ​routines ​can make ​the ​adjustment ​to ​homeownership ​that ​much ​easier.

Think ​about ​what ​you ​like ​to ​do ​in ​your ​down ​time ​and ​start looking ​for ​neighborhoods ​that ​can ​support ​that.

A ​good ​place ​to ​begin ​is ​by ​deciding ​what’s ​most ​important ​to have ​close ​by ​to ​enhance ​your ​lifestyle. ​Some ​common considerations ​include:

  • Shopping
  • Restaurants
  • Parks
  • Trails ​or ​Walking ​Paths
  • Gyms ​or ​Recreation ​Centers
  • Public ​transit

#3. ​Your ​Budget

If ​you’re ​considering ​buying ​a ​home, ​you’ve ​likely ​already determined ​the ​budget ​for ​the ​actual ​house ​and ​budgeted ​for your ​down ​payment, ​closing ​costs ​and ​taxes ​to ​get ​you ​through the ​purchase.

Taxes ​and ​home ​maintenance ​will ​have ​to ​be ​accounted ​for ​on an ​ongoing ​basis. ​This ​is ​where ​townhome ​living ​can ​be ​a ​real plus ​as ​maintenance ​costs ​are ​lower, ​and ​if ​you ​purchase ​a ​new home ​you’ll ​have ​many ​years ​until ​you ​have ​to ​deal ​with ​routine items ​like ​getting ​a ​new ​roof.

Above ​and ​beyond ​these ​costs, ​buying ​a ​home ​may ​impact ​your ongoing ​monthly ​budget ​as ​well. ​For ​example, ​a ​monthly mortgage ​payment ​that’s ​higher ​than ​your ​current ​rent ​can translate ​to ​less ​disposable ​income.

To ​create ​a ​realistic ​budget ​for ​your ​first ​home, ​you’ll ​want ​to create ​a ​new ​monthly ​budget ​that ​takes ​all ​of ​these ​items ​into account.

#4. ​Your ​Five ​Year ​Plan

When ​you’re ​caught ​up ​in ​the ​excitement ​of ​buying ​your ​first home, ​thinking ​about ​where ​you’ll ​be ​five ​or ​ten ​years ​down ​the line ​may ​not ​be ​top-of-mind.

You ​may ​not ​have ​your ​entire ​life ​planned ​out, ​but ​knowing ​how long ​you ​plan ​on ​spending ​in ​the ​home ​before ​you ​purchase ​is important. ​The ​resale ​value ​of ​your ​home ​matters, ​and ​if ​you’re buying ​in ​an ​area ​that ​historically ​sees ​a ​slower ​rise ​in ​home values, ​buying ​and ​selling ​within ​the ​span ​of ​a ​few ​years ​may ​not yield ​the ​results ​you ​want.

Another ​major ​consideration ​if ​you’re ​looking ​at ​your ​five ​or ten-year ​plan ​is ​thinking ​ahead ​to ​what ​your ​life ​may ​look ​like. While ​no ​one ​has ​a ​crystal ​ball ​to ​see ​into ​the ​future, ​most ​of ​us have ​plans ​and ​goals ​we ​want ​to ​achieve ​so ​giving ​those ​some
thought ​is ​essential ​so ​you ​buy ​a ​home ​you ​can ​stay ​in ​for ​years ​to come.

#5. ​Features ​that ​are ​Essential ​to ​Your ​Lifestyle

Only ​you ​get ​to ​decide ​what ​matters ​most ​and ​would ​be considered ​“essential” ​for ​your ​lifestyle.

Think ​about ​your ​hobbies. ​If, ​for ​example, ​you’re ​an ​avid ​kayaker or ​cyclist, ​where ​are ​you ​going ​to ​store ​those ​bigger ​items? ​Do you ​need ​a ​garage ​because ​you ​love ​restoring ​motorcycles ​in ​your spare ​time?

A ​great ​example ​is ​how ​someone ​who ​is ​a ​keen ​gardener ​is probably ​going ​to ​want ​a ​bit ​of ​yard ​to ​work ​on. ​Conversely, someone ​who ​travels ​frequently ​for ​work ​and ​doesn’t ​spend ​a ​ton of ​time ​at ​home, ​may ​not ​have ​any ​interest ​in ​a ​garden ​or ​big lawn.

Buying ​your ​first ​home ​is ​an ​exciting ​prospect ​and ​you ​want ​to make ​the ​best ​choice ​possible. ​Taking ​time ​before ​you ​start looking ​at ​homes ​to ​figure ​out ​what ​matters ​most ​in ​your ​lifestyle means ​you’re ​that ​much ​more ​likely ​to ​find ​your ​perfect ​home.

Click ​H​ERE​​ to​ view ​our​ newest ​townhome​ communities​ and join ​our ​VIP​ email​ list.​ You’ll ​be ​the​ first ​to​ know​ about​ the ​new townhome​ releases​ and​ get​ the ​latest ​and​ greatest​ news ​from Westcott ​Homes.

Westcott Homes offers modern living and smart design for today’s active families, in neighborhoods with room to grow. Our flexible floorplans, durable Pacific Northwest exteriors and luxurious interior details add up to a home you’ll delight in every day, and for years to come.