We weren’t super picky about specific features, which I think helped us get the best deal possible. My requirements were:
1. Location that was equal commute distance for both DH and I (we work in different cities). This eliminated most of the metro-area, other than two small suburb cities. We settled on the house that was in a town that made each of our commutes about 20 minutes.
2. At least 3 bedrooms, with no more than 4.
3. Not a townhome. Has to be a freestanding, single family home.
4. Wood or tile floors on the main floor. I hate carpet, I think it’s disgusting, unsanitary and needs to be replaced way too often to keep it looking nice.
Because we didn’t have a lot of specifics, our realtor was able to really find some houses that were an amazing deal for the price. We bought ours 2 days after it went on the market. It’s 1600 square feet, 3 bedrooms with cherry wood floors throughout main level, and brand new carpet upstairs. Roof is now, stainless steel appliances are brand new (other than the fridge, we had to buy that), granite countertops are brand new, updated bathrooms, fireplace, a two-level outdoor deck, large yard (but no fence – we’ll have to put one in), floor to ceiling windows throughout great room/master bedroom, tray ceilings, attic fan, double garage. I am planning on posting pictures later today, but anyway, the story is: The less you “require,” the more likely you are to get an awesome house! My mom is also looking, and her realtor is having to skip over a bunch of gorgeous homes because they don’t have one of her required features: a sunroom. It’s too bad, because she could build one for only around $6-8000.
We really wanted a fenced-in yard, but I’m so glad our realtor didn’t skip this house because we told her we “had to have” a fenced-in yard.