This is our first follow-up article in the series on the home building process. The first article provided an overview of the home building process; now we are going to take a closer look at step one: choosing your location.
While every step in the home building process is important, it’s hard to exaggerate the significance of location. Where you decide to build your new home will affect every other part of the process and have a significant impact on your day-to-day life.
The following topics will help as you sort out your priorities, needs, and desires. Make a list and be prepared to revise it a few times. Don’t be surprised if your priorities change as you start to dig deeper into what your ideal home location provides.
Distance to Work
The first consideration you’ll want to look at is whether or not the location provides convenient access to work. Like many families, you and your spouse may both work outside the home, which makes it more challenging to find a location that is convenient for both. But it’s worth taking time at the front end of the journey to decide what a realistic and livable commute looks like for both of you—especially considering the variable Colorado weather. Once you’ve begun looking at homes, it’s all too easy to convince yourself that you can handle a longer commute than you want. Decide in the beginning how long you’re willing to travel between work and home, and stick to it.
Location & Lifestyle
How often do you make trips to the grocery store? Do you stock up once every two weeks or prefer to make daily stops? How often do you eat out? Do you have season tickets for the Broncos? Are you committed to using public transportation?
These are some of the questions to keep in mind as you consider your ideal location for a new home. Outside of the community itself, spend some time looking around to see what’s in the area. From gas stations and fast food to athletic events and cultural performances, the amount of time and effort required to access the things that are important to you will make a big impact on your quality of life.
How much home can you afford? This may seem like an obvious question, but it’s easy to get caught up in what is available in the market and lose site of what you are willing and able to pay. Talk to your bank or lender early on and get a pre-qualification letter. Not only will you feel more at peace about what you can afford, you’ll also find it easier to narrow down your search with a firm price in mind.
Apart from the home, you’ll also want to consider the community. What types of amenities are available? Master planned communities typically provide some type of shared outdoor space, but some communities also include other perks. The Terrain community in Castle Rock features a Swim Club, an award-winning Clubhouse, several parks, and a network of trails and open space. Every community is different, so be sure to get the full picture of what’s included when you build in a planned community.
If you have children, you’ll be looking at the area schools to see what options are available to your family. For example, Terrain provides information about the Douglas County Schools that residents attend. This is another factor that warrants close consideration before you make an offer on a home. Where do you want your kids going to school next year? In five years? Ten? If possible, talk to families within the community and find out what schools their kids attend and how they feel about them.
Now that you’ve got some helpful parameters to guide your search, the fun begins! Search online but don’t be afraid to hop in your car, too. Visit as many communities as you can to get a feel for the various areas. Going in person is the best way to decide whether or not you can picture yourself living there. There are a lot of great planned communities out there, but you’re looking for the one that is the best fit for you. From location to amenities, prices to schools, there are a lot of factors that make a community feel like home.
Stay tuned for more in our series on the home building process. Next up, we’ll talk about how to choose a builder for your new home.
Terrain is a planned community in Castle Rock of new homes ranging from the $300s - $600s. In addition to many lifestyle-enhancing amenities, residents enjoy homes built by some of the best home builders in the country. Models are open daily—visit today!