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6 Basic Things to Consider Before Purchasing a New Townhome

New Townhomes | Home Buying Tips | EYA

6 Basic Things to Consider Before Purchasing a New Townhome Blog Feature

By: EYA Homes on July 26th, 2017

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Purchasing a new home is a big decision.

If you’re considering a new townhome, there are a number of questions you’ll want to research to determine if a neighborhood is right for you.

Does this townhome design include amenities and features that you want, and need? 
Will you be comfortable entertaining friends and family?
Is it convenient to important locations such as work, schools, or shopping? How will living in this location impact your current routines?
Does the neighborhood offer life within walking distance? 

If you need help deciding which townhome is right for you, send us a quick message. We’d be happy to help you make the best choice.

Take the following six things into consideration before purchasing a new townhome.

1) Prioritize Location

It’s easy to get excited about a new townhome – luxury features, open floorplans, high-end kitchens, and spacious bathrooms, all designed for modern lifestyles. But in time, those features could lose their luster if the location isn’t ideal for you.

Choosing a townhome in the right location is (and always has been) the most important consideration for home buying. Location determines how easy it will be for you to get to work, run errands, visit friends, and get to school, the gym, or your favorite meeting spots.   

Does this location positively impact your daily routines or commute? Is there public transit; is the community easily accessible by metro, train, or bus? What about walkability? Does it include trails, parks or sidewalks? Does the community offer alternatives such as car sharing and bike sharing?

How can you make sure you’re choosing the right community?

If possible, walk or drive around your prospective new neighborhood during different times of the day and week to give yourself a glimpse of what it would be like to live there. Good times to visit are during the weekday morning and evening rush hours, as well as during a weekend. Talk to your broker or sales manager to learn about future phases or plans for the area, or visit the City Planner’s office to learn about regional plans.

A secondary, but important location concern is where your new townhome is situated within the community. Do you want to be near amenities such as dog parks, tot playgrounds, or extra parking? What is most important to you?

Remember, you can always add upgrades to your townhome with furnishings and builder options, but a home’s location will never change.

2) Understand the Floor Plans

Make sure you understand the type of living space you need—most buyers focus on square footage but it’s important to also consider your lifestyle preferences. Open floorplans are popular for main entertainment areas, but bedrooms and baths require privacy. Some families want all the bedrooms on one level. Others seek some separate space. The last thing you want is to move into a new townhome, only to realize that the space isn’t what you expected.

In addition to visiting the neighborhood, take time to walk through the model home at different times and ask family or friends to join you. This added perspective will help confirm your favorite floorplans and features.

3) Know What Comes Standard (and What Doesn’t)

New townhomes offer loads of amenities and it can be difficult to separate standard features from optional upgrades. Always ask the sales manager about amenities and upgrades so you can clearly evaluate the choices.

Pricing information should be included with sales materials, and this is a good starting point to understand base home price and details on additional options. Invest time in reviewing the property’s website to compare different models and features, and reference the photo gallery to see examples of different selections.

This will give you insight into what’s available, and what’s not. Once you’re familiar with all the options, you are better prepared to prioritize add-ons and upgrades that you want.

Additionally, the neighborhood may offer certain amenities like shuttle service to the Metro, dog park, on-site fitness center, or park space. Understanding these will help you choose among different models or neighborhood locations.

4) Set a Realistic Budget 

One of the most important considerations when purchasing a new townhome – or any home, for that matter – is creating a realistic budget.

Determine how much you can afford beforehand—there are numerous mortgage calculator tools available online that offer good ballpark information with no obligation. Most only require some basic information—but be certain to only use a site offered by a reputable bank or mortgage lender.

As you define your ideal budget, don’t forget to take into account any recurring fees. Homeowners Association (HOA) community fees need to be included. For some buyers, you may be able to give up your monthly gym membership or lawn services, so factor these changes into your monthly budget.

For most of us, budget setting helps to distinguish between features you need versus features you want. 

5) Look Into the Future

When buying a new townhome, consider your future needs. Do you need a spare bedroom for visiting family or guests? If you have children, what is the nearby school district like? Can you add upgrades later to make your purchase more affordable now?

Beyond the townhome, you should understand the short- and long-term plans for the immediate neighborhood and surrounding property. Will there be new amenities added? New roads? What changes should you anticipate?

By giving thought to your future, you will better ensure enjoyment of your new townhome now, as well as for years to come.

6) Research Builders Before Taking the Plunge

When you consider purchasing a new townhome, make sure you pay attention to the 2 R’s: Research and Reviews.

In addition to researching the neighborhood, look at the builder's other communities. Look online for other current selling or established neighborhoods. Chances are there will be several nearby.

Ask yourself how the neighborhood feels when you enter it. Is the plan well thought out? Did the townhome design and materials appeal to you? Are the townhomes, as well as yards and public spaces well maintained?

Look for reviews from the other homeowners; you will find these on the builder’s website or Facebook page. There are likely to be positive as well as a few negative comments, so it’s important to get a big picture view. Are there some notable trends? Focus on reviews posted over the past two years and ask your sales manager to explain any comments that raise questions. 

Ready to Buy a New Home?

Buying a new townhome is an exciting but overwhelming decision. However, if you start the process with some thoughtful questions and research, it may help you focus on the big picture as you sort through the many details. And perhaps the greatest value is that it can help you make more confident decisions.

If you need help deciding which townhome is right for you, send us a quick message. We’d be happy to help you make the best choice.