You just finished a full day of viewings and you are spent. You walk into your kitchen, lay out the feature sheets and start narrowing down the list. After a while, you arrive at 2 properties and you can’t quite make the choice. Both have pros and cons. Both could potentially work. But how do you make the right decision? Ask yourself this question.
If both homes were the same price, which home would you choose?
We tend to get caught up in the details of home buying and this can detract from what we truly want in a property. We go back and forth on the properties because both could work - but which one do you really see yourself in?
Now, this only works if you are shopping within your budget. Comparing homes that have a 15% difference in price will not cut it. But let’s say the properties you are comparing have a 3-5% difference in price and you are shopping within your budget. Asking yourself which one you would choose if the price was the same can reframe the way you are looking at the properties.
The reason differences in price can throw us off track is certain pros and cons have a subjective price in our eyes. Take for instance an open concept kitchen: what is an open concept kitchen worth? Well, the depends greatly on the person. When you have price in the mix, you start to ask “is the closed kitchen worth X to me”? When this happens your focus narrows and you forget the endless other differences in the properties. For example, the kitchen is closed but there is an extra bedroom, and the bathroom has just been remodelled - now what are each of these worth and how does it compare to the asking price. It gets messy quickly, so never lose sight of what you want in your property.
Two caveats to this approach are if you are buying as an investment, or if you plan on selling the property again soon. But if you are buying a home to build a life in, ask yourself the magic questions: which property would you choose if both properties were the same price?