Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What We Want

This week's House Thursday details what all Dylan and I are looking for in our house.

This was definitely an important step. Dylan and I had several conversations about this before we contacted our realtor. We didn't necessarily agree on everything, or have the same priorities, but marriage, and especially buying a house is about compromise.

One of the most important things is a big, or large, kitchen. We decided while looking at houses that we definitely want to have both a breakfast nook/eat-in kitchen and a formal dining room. Dylan is definitely a big cook, so we want a lot of counter space. Preferences, but not requirements for the kitchen: gas stove, pantry, and granite counter tops. The other interesting thing in looking at houses is what appliances are and are not included. We definitely do not have any appliances of our own besides the washer and dryer, so we basically need to have the appliances included.

The next thing is the master bedroom. Dylan and I have a master suite right now (master bedroom and bathroom attached, with the bathroom open, i.e. no separate door), which we really like. We definitely want a five-piece bath (two sinks, separate shower and bath tub, and separate room for the toilet ("water closet")). With five-piece baths, the bath tub is usually a soak tub, which is super nice, but obviously a jacuzi tub is even better if we luck out. We also want/need a pretty large bedroom. The plan is to get a king-size bed; with the two dogs and three kids, we'll need the space. Then I also have a lot of clothes, so room for a couple dressers and nightstands is important. Speaking of clothes, WALK IN CLOSET is SUPER important. Makes or breaks a house for sure.

Next is the other bedrooms. We either need to have 4 bedrooms already in the house, or be able to add a fourth bedroom to the basement. Since we want 3 kids, we want to be able to have them each have their own room or have two kids share and have a guest bedroom. 

The last big requirement is a big yard. At minimum we need to have space for a swing set and extra room to move. The bigger yard the better, but it also needs to be flat. The obvious drawback of a big yard is the upkeep, but I always loved playing in our backyard when I was younger so it will be worth it for the dogs and kids. This is probably one of the hardest requirements to meet in HR as the houses are big but the lots are smaller.

One of the other considerations is the basement. In general, we would prefer that it is finished (because who knows if we'd ever actually finish it), a full basement (so that we have maximum space) and the best would be a walk-out basement (then it really is like another level of the house, plus we get a nice deck that way). Also, we definitely prefer hard wood floors over carpet on the main level.

So that's a general break down of what we want in our future house. We have definitely found a lot of houses that meet or exceed our requirements within our price range, so it's almost just a matter of picking and choosing!

We meet with our mortgage broker on Tuesday, so hopefully that goes well and we get preapproved and can start looking at houses again.

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