4 Tips for Long-Distance House Hunting

View of Wilmington North Carolina from across the river

Searching for a house locally can present plenty of challenges, but it can become infinitely more complicated when you add in hundreds of miles to the equation. If you are finding yourself in the middle of doing some long-distance house-hunting, here are a few critical factors to keep in mind!

Do Your Homework

When looking at relocating to an unfamiliar area, so many other factors must be considered on top of finding the perfect house. For example, what are average local commute times, what are crime rates in the area, and, most importantly, how do the schools rank? Websites such as AreaVibes and U.S. News & World Report can give you plenty of information about a city including its housing market, livability scores, job market, schools, crime rate and cost of living. Arming yourself with as much knowledge as possible about a new area will make your long-distance house hunting experience so much easier!

Find a Knowledgeable Realtor

While the internet offers plenty of options and solutions to people searching for the right home, nothing can substitute having a realtor who is very familiar with the region, neighborhood, and local real estate market. In addition to knowing specifics about the area, a good realtor will be able to show you the ins and outs of various neighborhoods, so you can make an informed and wise decision.

Know What You Want

When you’re in the market for buying a home, you should take your time in putting together a specific list of features you want. This is especially crucial when you’re buying from a distance. This helps your realtor search for listings in the right areas that fit your needs and wants. Start by writing down what you need and want from a home. A few questions to ask yourself include: What style of house do I want? How many bedrooms and bathrooms do I need? Do I want a house with an open floor plan?

Plan Your Visit

Once you work through a list of houses and narrow it down with your realtor, plan out your travel budget, and schedule time to check out these homes in person. Ideally, you should try to plan two visits. During these visits, make plans to meet up with your Realtor and have them show you around various neighborhoods. In addition to house hunting, spend some time doing excursions in the region by dining out at local restaurants, exploring your transportation options, and shopping at local retail stores to get familiar with the area.

The Down-Low on Down Payments

While a 20 percent down payment is considered ideal, it’s not actually as common as you might think, nor is it a necessity to buying a home.

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Equal Housing Lender LogoALCOVA Mortgage LLC | NMLS#40508 | (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)
Licensed in AL, CO, DC, FL, GA, IN, KY, MD, NC, OH, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, WV |
308 Market St SE, Roanoke, VA 24011