We’ve all been through it.
It’s one of those nasty habits we have: we like food, sleep and… shelter. Yeah, such vice ridden people, aren’t we?
So lets presume you’ve looked or are looking for a house/flat/apartment/basement…whatever you think suits your needs.
Most people (surprisingly EVEN when having experience) think that once you decide you want/need to move, its a chicken run to find the best deal possible.
For the record: I’ve also done that…guilty as pleaded.
So you start hitting the internet, the newspapers, ads in local press, bumper stickers and basically keep an eye open for every single opportunity.
Boy…is that TIRING! Time consuming and usually fruitless.
So here is my sugestion…sharing what happened the last time I had to look for a house.
I set a per month top mark I would not go beyond FOR ANY reason. It was below what I could actually go to…but decided that if my budget was X, take 10-15% off that for “just in case”.
With that number fixed, I worked out how many months deposit + agency fees + [insert your local partice]… and that gives you another number.
THAT is the number you need to work for in the first place. Let’s call it entry fee.
Doesn’t matter if I find the Taj Majal for the montly fee I fixed…if you haven’t yet saved the entry fee, you’re going to be in a TOUGH situation right from the start.
While working for the entry fee…define properly your criteria. It doesn’t have to get too specific (unless you’re a feng shui follower), but you do need to know:
- How many rooms (kids? hobby space? At house office?)
- Location (need to park a car? two? Need metro or bus to commute?)
- Aditional restrictions (pets? elevator mandatory?)
So, now we have a budget, an entry fee, a pretty good idea of what we need…and you can probably work most of this out in a couple hours if you are REALLY picky about details ( disclosure: I really like Excel and spreadsheets!).
Pick up a piece of paper and draw something like this:
|House 1||400||1||Good||Pets||water included|
|House 3||600||3||Excellent||No pets||none|
If you put the places you find in this matrix it will be a no brainer to decide.
And here is where you can actually take it a step further: have a positive attitude. Don’t rush it, don’t push your self-defined boundaries.
You’ve thought out your plan nicely and with calm…don’t change your criteria just because the circumstances push you to a rash decision. Stick to your guns!
In my case…location was very important.
So when I had managed to get my entry fee, I spent a few hours crunching the internet and preparing a matrix like the one above.
All of the 15 items I had prepared to call on monday morning belonged to agencies…except 1. It had a cell number…which I decided to ring up on that Sunday afternoon.
Guess what…he picked up.
I saw the flat on Monday.
Closed the deal on Tuesday.
Started moving on Wednesday.
Know your plan, stick to it, focus and if it fits to your most relevant criteria…jump to it with a smile and an attitude!
What do you think? Have you had similar experiences? Leave a comment or tweet and let us know 🙂