Tips on Buying a House!

A grammatical analysis of "OMG We Bought A House" will point out the obvious — it's in the past tense. The buying is done, the house is bought. While this means we were able to launch our series by diving right into all the renovation projects you've been following for the past 3 years, it does mean that the very important step of actually buying the house and all the tips that go along with it happened off camera.

That is, until today! While the LA rain kept our outside plans awash, we took a field trip to an open house nearby in LA to get inspired and show all of you how the home-buying gets done!

Watch the episode above and scope some major interior design inspo, and all of my tips for open housing like a pro, below!

How to prepare for an open house:

  • When looking for houses to view, start your search based on your neighborhood preferences and desired price range
  • Likely, you'll already be pre-approved for a certain amount to spend on a house, so you can consider what you have to spend on a down payment, mortgage, etc. You have to think ahead about payment during the search!
  • When you sign in to an open house, you can either put down your information or your real estate agent's information. This is so the agent showing the house can follow up on your viewing!

What to think about when viewing a house:

  • Always take your lifestyle into consideration. A home can be beautiful, but is it near a school if you have children or plan to? Is there a bus route nearby? The location should be weighed with equal importance as the structure of the home.
  • Make a "what's right for you" list — write down all of the things your new home would ideally provide you (but know the difference between your needs and wants.) No home is perfect, and you will have to compromise on this list, but understanding how a home can best suit you will enable you to make an educated compromise.
  • The general rule is that the larger a house is, and the more desirable neighborhood it is in, the more expensive it will be. Consider if you could live in a different neighborhood or smaller home to get closest to what you want.
  • The cheapest option might be to update a home yourself, like we did! Be aware of renovation potential when you're looking at homes that are a little older.

House details to keep an eye out for:

  • This home that we toured was staged, meaning filled with furniture to give the viewer a sense of what it could look like finished. When you purchase a staged home, there is an option to buy the furniture along with it. If you take that route, make sure that the furniture fits your needs for the home!
  • Ask about finishing materials used in the home, like the cabinets and countertops. As we showed in our kitchen, these details can make a major difference, but are also ultimately replaceable if you go for a renovation option!
  • Some other important things to consider that might not be immediately obvious are window placement and sunlight, and storage space! These are both very impactful on your experience living in a home, so keep an eye out for them when touring!

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