What You Might Not Know to Look For At an Open House

What You Might Not Know to Look For At an Open House

When you're on the hunt for your dream home in the Santa Rosa Beach real estate market, attending open houses can be both an exciting and overwhelming experience. While you're likely to be focused on aesthetic aspects like the layout and finishes, there are several less obvious factors that you should not overlook. In this blog, we'll guide you through some of the hidden elements to consider while touring homes so you can make a well-informed decision and snag that perfect property in Santa Rosa Beach.

1. The Smell Test

As you enter the house, take a moment to breathe in deeply. While you may be greeted by the pleasant aroma of freshly baked cookies or fragrant candles, pay attention to any underlying smells. Mustiness could be an indication of mold, whereas a strong smell of fresh paint in a specific area might mean that something is being covered up.

2. Natural Light and Ventilation

Pictures can be misleading. A room that looks bright and airy in photos may not necessarily be so in person. Assess how much natural light each room gets and how well-ventilated spaces are. Good natural lighting not only reduces energy costs but also impacts your well-being.

3. Listen Carefully

While exploring, take a few moments to listen. Squeaky floorboards, loud traffic, or noisy neighbors are often easily ignored when you're engrossed in the home's visual appeal. Noise levels can significantly impact your comfort and quality of life in a new home.

4. Look Up and Down

When you're mesmerized by a beautiful kitchen or a spacious living room, you might forget to look up at the ceiling or down at the floor. Water stains on the ceiling could indicate a leaky roof, while uneven floors might signify foundational issues—both red flags in the Santa Rosa Beach real estate world.

5. Storage Space

While touring the house, open closets, cupboards, and even the attic. Adequate storage is often overlooked but can become an issue later on. Built-in storage options can also add value to a home and are an excellent feature to have.

6. Outside the House

If the home passes all your indoor tests, step outside. Check the condition of the roof, gutters, and siding. Are there cracks in the driveway? Is the yard well-maintained? The external condition of a house can give you insights into how well the property has been taken care of over the years.

7. Test Drive the Commute

If possible, take some time to drive from the house to your workplace during rush hour. The house might be perfect, but if the commute is too long or stressful, it could become a significant downside. Additionally, test driving your commute is a good way to get comfortable if you’re moving to a new area and don’t know the directions by heart.

8. Future Resale Value

The Santa Rosa Beach real estate market is competitive, and while you may be focused on buying, consider the home’s future resale value. Factors like school districts, local amenities, and upcoming community developments can all impact how easily you can sell the house later. The size and orientation of the lot can also have a significant impact on resale value. Corner lots and those that are larger than average for the area often command higher prices. Additionally, a south-facing backyard is generally more desirable because it gets more sunlight.

You can also consider what upgrades you might make to your home that would boost resale value down the line. For example, maybe the big backyard is the perfect place for a pool – a great way to level up the home’s value. Inquire about the age of critical home systems like the roof, HVAC, plumbing, and electrical. Newer systems or well-maintained older ones can add to the home’s resale value since the next owner won’t have to worry about immediate replacements. Even if you're not planning to move again anytime soon, it's wise to make a financially sound investment.

9. Check the Appliances

Turn on the stove, run the dishwasher, and test any built-in appliances. These are items that are included in the sale most of the time, and replacing them can be costly.

10. Attend Multiple Open Houses

Sometimes, the best way to know what you want is to see what’s out there. Attend multiple open houses in the Santa Rosa Beach real estate market to get a feel for what's available and at what price. The more houses you see, the easier it will be to spot a good deal or identify something that’s overpriced.
While the layout, number of bedrooms, and modern amenities are crucial, these hidden elements should not be overlooked when you're house-hunting. Each open house in Santa Rosa Beach offers an opportunity to gather essential information that could influence one of the biggest financial and emotional decisions of your life. Take your time, be attentive, and don't hesitate to ask questions. The more you know, the better prepared you'll be to make an informed choice regarding securing your dream home in the Santa Rosa Beach real estate market.
Would you like personalized guidance on navigating the Santa Rosa Beach real estate market? Feel free to reach out to Josh Jimenez for expert advice and insider tips to find your dream home in this idyllic beachfront community. Your perfect home is out there; let's find it together!


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