Your housing needs of today may not be your housing needs of tomorrow. Of course, by “tomorrow” I mean three, five, or even seven years from now. If you can plan a path ahead and account for any personal, career, or lifestyle changes, then you’ll reap the benefits of home ownership.
To begin the process, start by asking yourself the following questions:
- What will my family look like in three to five years? Will there be a new addition (or two) to your family? Will you have kids that are grown up and about to move out? What is the possibility that an elderly relative (Mom, Dad or grandparent) will be living with you?
- What will change regarding work and school? Will a teenager be off to college? Will you or your spouse be retired? Will someone in your household be starting a home business?
- How will your lifestyle be different? Will you take up a hobby that you’d like to be able to reach easily (such as golf)? Do you see yourself wanting to live closer to shopping, theatre, walks in the woods, etc.? Will you eventually be traveling more often and, therefore, not be at home as much?
- How is the neighborhood changing? Where is it heading relative to your future needs in terms of residents, noise, sense of community, local developments, etc.? Do you see yourself wanting to live in a quieter community, or a more urban center?
- Will the type of home you need change? In three to five years, can you see yourself wanting a larger home? Smaller home? More bedrooms? Larger kitchen?
- What are your dreams? Do you dream of living in a particular area or neighborhood? Would you love to have a big backyard with a garden someday? Do you sometimes think, “It would be great to have a wooded park with walking trails just a few minutes away.”
By looking three to five years into the future, you will be able to predict your housing needs and make plans – today – to ensure you get what you want in the future.