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Define Your Parameters


I usually suggest first time home buyers have a clear list of both needs and wants when they talk to me about buying their first home.


Needs – Location


Where do you want to live?  This can be a balancing act for many.  How close do you want your commute to work?  Do you really want to live in the city?  Is the country a better choice for me?  Wow so many questions to answer on this one, but this should be the highest on your NEEDS LIST.


Here are a few things to consider:

  1. Do I want to live in the privacy of the suburbs or have the convenience of the city?
  2. If you have children, do your research on schools.  This can be an important family decision.
  3. What is your lifestyle; do you want golfing, parks, jogging trails or other things nearby?
  4. If a commute is necessary, please consider the highway access, red lights, traffic and other things that may turn your off to a location.
  5. Crime is a big one.  You can go to Neighborhoodscout.com and check out crime reports.  You don’t want to leave where you are scared to leave your home.
  6. A healthy environment is also something to consider.  If you go to the EPA’s http://www.epa.gov/myenvironment/ and type in the zip code to learn more about an area health risk.

Needs – Home Requirements


The next step is to determine the home requirements.  These are the things that you require.  Remember the more things you require the more limitation you place on what you Realtor® will show you.  At a minimum you should have these defined:

  • Price Range
  • Number of Bedrooms
  • Number of Bathrooms
  • Is a garage required?  If so how large?
  • How many cars do you have and how much parking is required?
  • Single or Multi-Level
  • Square Footage of the home required.  Remember, usually the large a home is the higher the price.   Ask your Realtor about price per square foot average in the area you are interested in.
  • Outside requirements such as lawn size and fencing should be added to your needs list.



Ok you have decided what you minimum requirements are with your NEEDS LIST, so now it is time to decide things you want.  Things on your wants list are not as important, but they will tell your Realtor more about what you think your perfect first time home should look like.  Things on your wants list:


  • Styles of home you like, examples are brick, ranch, craftsman, etc.
  • Amenities like pools, garden, shop, office, large kitchen, etc.
  • Any other thing that you would like to have in your home


Although many of your wants could be put on the needs list, it is my suggestion that you keep your needs list to the minimum required things and your wants list will expand more on things you would like to have.  Remember if you add too many things on your NEES LIST, the Realtor may not show you a home that you would have loved because it did not have something on that list.

Give me a call (505)780-0310, or send me an email for information on Santa Fe Real Estate.

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