Alyx Akers
Five College REALTORS ® | 413-320-6405 | AlyxAkersRealtor@gmail.com


Posted by Alyx Akers on 2/23/2020

Before you even set out to buy a home, you may think that you need to look at a magic number of homes in order to find the house that’s right for you. There’s always a fear among buyers that they didn’t look at enough homes before settling on one. The number of homes that you look at is up to you. There is no magic number that will dictate finding the perfect home. The most important thing is to trust your own intuition. In A seller’s market, you also may not have much choice. When inventory is low, if you find a home you love, you’ll need to move to make an offer on it! 


The Average Buyer


People looking at condos take between 1 and 3 months to find the property that’s right for them. Those looking for single family homes tend to take a bit longer- between 3 and 6 months to find a home. Buying a traditional house seems to spark more questions and more uncertainty, which leads buyers to take their time to find what they’re looking for.


Know Where You Want To Live


Before you start your home search, you should have a good idea of where you want to live. Have a list of cities, towns, and neighborhoods narrowed down to make your search a bit easier from the start. Take a ride around potential neighborhoods and get a feel for them. See the stores, restaurants, and nearby parks to really understand the area. 


Match Your Lifestyles


Where you choose to live has a lot to do with your lifestyle. Think of the following:


  • Where your friends live
  • Where your family lives
  • Where you work
  • What you do for fun


Whatever you love and whatever you love to do should be a factor in your home search. If you love the beach, you don’t want to be a three hour drive away if you can help it. You also don’t want a 2-hour commute to work. Find the balance to make your life happier in the new space you choose.      


Make A List


It sounds simple, but making a list of what you must have, what you’d like, and what would be a bonus can really help you in your home search. This holds true whether you look at 2 homes or 50 homes. The number of homes that you look at isn’t as important as your needs and wants. Buying a home is a huge investment and you need to be happy with your decision. While it’s not completely advisable to buy the first house that you see, if you have a good idea of what you want in a tough market, it’s best to put an offer in.





Posted by Alyx Akers on 12/8/2019

Searching for a house should be a fun, exciting experience. It represents an opportunity to discover a residence that you can transform into your very own home. As such, conducting an effective home search may require both hard work and patience to ensure that you can achieve the best-possible results.

Ultimately, there are many factors to consider as you search for your ideal house, and these factors include:

1. Location

A home's location can have far-flung effects on a homeowner's day-to-day activities, and perhaps it is easy to understand why.

For example, a city home may provide quick, easy access to a wide range of attractions. On the other hand, this home may be located near major highways, which could create traffic problems for those who need to commute to school or work regularly.

As you search for your dream house, consider where you want to live both now and in the future. If you enjoy the hustle and bustle of city life, you may want to pursue houses in big cities. Or, if you prefer the serenity of small town living, you can search for a top-notch home in the suburbs.

2. Home Condition

It is paramount to assess a house's condition. Otherwise, you risk making an offer on a home that may have many "hidden" problems that probably will need to be corrected in the foreseeable future.

A home requires maintenance over time, and an older house may be more susceptible than others to costly, time-intensive structural problems. Thus, depending on a home's age, you may need to account for many potential upgrades sooner rather than later.

It also may be worthwhile to find out which home upgrades that a home seller has already completed. If a seller recently replaced a house's roof or heating and cooling system or performed other major home upgrades, you may be able to reap the benefits of these house updates for years to come.

3. A Home's Price

The initial asking price of a home rarely, if ever, is set in stone. Therefore, if you find a house that is priced above your budget, you may be able to negotiate the house's price with the seller.

If you find a house that you want to buy, it helps to submit a competitive offer right away. This offer should account for the age and condition of a house, as well as the current housing market's conditions. And if the offer meets a seller's expectations, he or she should have no trouble accepting the proposal.

Lastly, if you need help searching for a house, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. This housing market professional can keep you up to date about new houses that become available, provide plenty of homebuying tips and suggestions and help you submit an offer on your dream house. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent is happy to respond to your homebuying questions, guaranteeing that you can make informed decisions at each stage of the homebuying journey.





Posted by Alyx Akers on 4/15/2018

Before buying a home, you may have a number in mind as to how many houses you think that you should look at before you find the house that's right for you. You may wonder if you’ve looked too much or not enough while you’re in the process of searching for a home. The fact of the matter is that how many homes you look at is completely up to you. It’s a very personal preference. If you feel comfortable after looking at one house, you’re probably right. Trust your own intuition!


The average condo buyer takes between 1 to 3 months to find the right property. House buyers take a bit longer, averaging between 3 and 6 months of searching. The home buying process seems to entail a few more questions and a bit of a learning curve, which tends to take more time. This is obviously why first time buyers tend to take more time searching.


How To Have A Successful House Hunt:


Map Out Your Potential Neighborhoods


Before you even get in touch with your realtor, you should have an idea of the neighborhoods you’d like to look for a home in. Drive around your potential towns and hang out there. Go to local restaurants, see the downtown area and check out the grocery store. See how you feel being there, and if you’d like it to be part of what you call “home.” 


Know Your Lifestyle


Where your friends live, where you work and what you like to do for fun all have an impact on the type of neighborhood that you’ll choose to search for a home in. If you love to golf, and the nearest course is more than 30 miles away, maybe you should reconsider where you’re searching. Of course, you want your commute time to and from work to be as short as possible.   


Decide What You Need


Make a list of everything that you absolutely need to have in your home and neighborhood. Narrow down your wish-list to that of “must-haves.” Then, understand your own budget for a home purchase. Knowing your finances will also give you a better idea of where you should focus your search. Once your focus is narrowed, you’ll be able to work with your realtor more freely. Being able to tell your realtor what you want and what you can afford is a great step in the right direction during the home search process.


Taking the time to know what you want out of where you want to live can help you to search for the right home. So, while there’s no magic number of homes to look at before you buy, it’s a better idea to understand your wants and needs and go from there.





Posted by Alyx Akers on 12/31/2017

Choosing a neighborhood is one of the most important aspects of the home search. Neighborhoods encompass the schools children will attend and the people you will interact with on a daily basis. You’ll truly never feel at home in a house if you don’t love your neighborhood. To choose the right home, you’ll need to do a little bit of ground work. You should figure out exactly what you’re looking for in a home and a neighborhood, and then research to find an area that suits your needs. There are certain things that you should keep in mind to research for the neighborhood with the perfect fit. Below are some things that you should consider when looking for the best neighborhood for you. Make A List Think about what you really want in a neighborhood. Then, categorize your desires. Put a column for what’s high priority, then use other columns for less pertinent things that you’re looking for in a neighborhood. If you’re unsure of what exactly to put on this list here’s some ideas: Cool For School Do you have children or are you planning to have children? Every parent knows that one of the most important things to look for in a neighborhood is the quality of the school system. Parks and community centers are also key things to live close to if you have children. Keep in mind that property values in areas with sought after school systems are higher. Home Style What type of home are you looking for? The type of neighborhood that you move to will depend upon the home style that you’re seeking. Single family homes, condos and apartments tend to stay in clusters. Keep this in mind when searching for a home. What’s Your Commute Time? How far are you willing to commute to work? This can be a deal breaker in finding the perfect neighborhood. If you take mass transit to work or if you don’t own a car, this can also be a huge area of concern for you in choosing the right neighborhood to purchase your home. What Do You Value? If you love coffee shops, then you may not want to live far from a city center. If you love the beach, don’t pick a neighborhood that has you landlocked. Having access to the things you love and value has a lot to do with your own happiness in a neighborhood. When home searching, you should consider what your current neighborhood is lacking and see if you can find a place to fill that void. Visit the Neighborhood and Use Your Senses As you start on your research, check out the neighborhoods and get a feel for them. Get out of your car and walk around. Although it sounds strange, see how the neighborhood smells. Listen to the noise of the traffic nearby. Maybe you’ll even sense the quiet! Take a look at how the homes in the neighborhood are designed and if you could actually see yourself living there. Do Some Digging There’s plenty of ways that you can research neighborhoods from the comfort of your couch. You can always find crime statistics for certain cities online and even see school rankings throughout cities. Real estate agents in the area can also help provide you with the statistics that you’re looking for. Trust your gut when it comes to choosing a neighborhood. With a little intuition and some research, you’ll be able to choose a place to live that’s perfect for you!







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