Buy Another House? 11 Things I’d Look For If I Do!

I bought my first house about five years ago. I like my house, but if I had it to do over again I might have waited it out until I found something a little different. Let’s look at 10 things I’d change if I were to buy another house.

I got a great deal on my house. It’s a good house and has already increased more than $50K in value. But I also got a lot of work and upkeep along with my purchase. If I ever buy another house, there are some things I’ll look for. You might be surprised at what you find on my list.

11 Things I’ll Look For If I Buy Another House

  1. Smaller size: My current house is 1400 sq. ft. That’s more than I need. My next house would be less than 1000 sq. ft. I think 600-800 would be perfect.
  2. Temperate climate: If I could, I would relocate to a climate where both heating and AC are rarely needed. Think San Diego. This would help save money on energy costs. 
  3. Single-car garage: I don’t need a two-car garage, I only drive one car, and frankly I don’t care if it’s parked in a garage or not. Still a small garage is nice to have for hobbies and storage.   
  4. Smaller yard: Heck, maybe a condo with no yard work would be better. But if I buy another house, I’d look for the smallest lot I can find. Big yards are overrated. 
  5. No grass: There are alternatives to lawns. You’ll need less yard tools and you’ll spend less time mowing and trimming the lawn. That gives you time to do things you really love. 
  6. Brick or block: You don’t have to paint brick houses. That will save you thousands of dollars over the years. Cinder block can work, too.
  7. Hip roof: A brick house with a hip roof creates a very maintenance-free exterior. Especially if you have no eves or trim as you have with a gable roof.    
  8. Remodeled rooms: I’d look for an up-to-date kitchen and bathroom if I were to buy another house. Who wants their kitchen torn up for weeks on end? 
  9. All hard floors: Wood, tile, or cement floors are much easier to care for than carpeted floors. I’d skip the area rugs, too.
  10. One story: I’d stick with a single floor, preferable with doors at ground level. I’m getting older. 
  11. No screen doors: I’ll take good solid doors but no screen/storm doors please. They just get in the way.

What Do These 11 Things All Have In Common?

Everything on this list has something in common: low maintenance. A simple house shouldn’t require long hours of work. If I buy another house in the future, I don’t want to spend 20 hours a week on upkeep.

There are other things that I could put on the list, like good overhead lighting, fenced back yard, and no basement, but we can’t get everything we want. In fact, when you buy a house you have to settle on some things you may not like. Chances are I’d never find a house with everything on my list.

Perhaps, I wouldn’t buy a house at all and get a condo instead. The only drawbacks are shared walls, committees, and fees. I think I could deal with that. How about a mobile home? I could sell my house and buy two used mobile homes outright. Hmm? And I even have experience living in trailers.

It doesn’t really matter what I buy next, or even if I rent. The point is simply to know what you’re looking for when the time comes for change. Don’t buy the first thing you see. Study your options and be aware.     

Dan Erickson


James Ewen
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