Buyers: How to make compromises during your house hunt

When it comes to most things in life, couples try their utmost to avoid the C-word: compromise. But you can't avoid it when it comes to buying property.

Here's how to make compromises during your house-hunting journey with advice from Seeff:

There is only one important rule to keep in mind when it comes to compromising during your house hunting journey and that is that there are some things that you could compromise on and others that you absolutely can’t. 

These factors naturally depend on your personal situation and budget so it is important that you sit down and distinguish the negotiables from the non-negotiables well before you start looking at homes and get too carried away!

When you have this list you should stick to your guns and not give in to your non negotiables no matter how much pressure you are under, but at the same time keep an open mind about all the rest. 

In general you shouldn’t compromise on things like security and budget, because if you budge now and things go wrong at a later stage it could lead to massive resentment and regrets from yourself or your partner.

Eliminate suburbs that aren’t secure and are situated within easy access and egress routes attracting criminal activity as well as suburbs that have not shown any growth and are not within a reasonable distance of good schooling, shopping centres and work opportunities.

If you decided that you wanted to live in a gated security estate, look for an estate that you can afford to live in until you find it, but don’t just buy a home in a normal neighbourhood because of affordability. This is the type of decision that may leave you uneasy about your own safety and that of your family and you can’t put a price on peace of mind. 

The same goes for budget, especially if you are already overextending yourself. Buying a home can come with hidden costs, especially if you are not clued up about the whole process so chances are good that you will already spend more than what you are bargaining for. You don’t ever want to create a situation where you could be at a risk of not being able to afford your bond repayments and that is why you should strictly stick to your budget from the get-go!

It is much safer to take a conservative approach when it comes to your budget. If you find something that you absolutely love, but it is out of your price range, ask the agent whether the owner would be willing to negotiate the price to what you have budgeted for, but if not move right along!

Generally it is easier to compromise on things that could be changed either now or at a later stage. Some of these include:

Finishes: The finishes may be outdated, but you can always change them. Try to look at the bigger, long term picture; getting the home you want where you want it is more important than the content at this stage!

Size: If the home is smaller than what you hoped for you can extend it when you have the funds. If it is bigger however, you could always convert one of the rooms to a hobbies room or even a store room.

If the garden is bigger than what you wanted to sign up for you can appoint garden services to do the hard work if you can afford it or even ask a friend with green fingers if they’d like to get involved and work their magic. If you hoped for a bigger garden you could always consider getting a vertical garden – they offer an excellent solution to gardening in small spaces!

Provided that you don’t compromise on a neighbourhood because of security reasons you can definitely look at adjacent neighbourhoods to the one that you are most interested in when you are looking to buy a home. Adjacent areas often offer the same value as your preferred suburb, but could be more affordable and could even be located within closer proximity to your place of work and/or good schools.

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