Congratulations! You’ve decided to embark on a new adventure: the search for an accessible home. Now that you’ve made this decision, The Arbor Move Team discusses some steps you can take to make the process as easy as possible.
Assess Your Situation
First, assess your situation. Determine how much you can spend on a new home (down payment and mortgage payments) by reviewing your budget, your savings, and your projected income. This will help narrow your search to homes in a particular price range. Don’t forget to budget for potential accessibility modifications as well.
Also, research some likely neighborhoods in Ann Arbor or in other cities where you might like to live, and pay close attention to the asking and sales prices of homes in those areas. This will help you narrow your search to locations that fit your budget.
List Your Needs
Take the next step in your house-hunting adventure by listing your accessibility needs. Consider the following:
- Single-story floor plan
- Wide doorways with properly hinged doors
- Reduced-height countertops and sinks
- Reachable cabinets
- Spacious rooms
- Safe and accessible bathtubs, showers, and toilets
- Hardwood floors
Create a personal checklist, prioritizing your needs and indicating both immediate necessities and potential modifications.
Find Your Agent
Choosing the right real estate agent is essential to your house-hunting adventure. The Arbor Move Team understands and respects your needs and budget and will guide you through the intricacies of purchasing a home.
Upon meeting an agent, stress your accessibility needs checklist, and ask if the agent has any experience with accessible homes. Also, make careful note of the agent’s fees and requirements.
Enjoy the Hunt
House hunting can actually be fun if you’re well prepared and stay within your budget. Bring a fresh copy of your checklist to every house you view, and fill it out with plenty of notes about necessary modifications (installing shower bars, adding ramps, or widening doorways, for instance). When you’ve seen several houses, compare your checklists, calculate the necessary modification costs, and see if anything suits your purposes. Before long, you may discover that you’ve found exactly the right house.
Embrace the Buying Process
Offers, home inspections, closing costs, mountains of paperwork, and mortgage commitments certainly seem daunting, but they’re all part of the buying process. Try to understand and embrace them as best you can under the guidance of your agent. Stress is normal at this point, but keep your eyes on the prize: that new house!
Make a Low-Stress Move
Finally, lower stress during your move by planning meticulously. Hire a reputable mover who can provide the packing, delivery, and unpacking services you need, and be sure to confirm costs ahead of time. Keep close track of your possessions by making lists and labels for your items, indicating which room they belong in and whether they’re fragile. Take pictures, too, both before and after packing, and monitor delivery and unpacking using your lists.
Off to Adventure!
While house hunting and moving will never be completely stress-free, these tips can help smooth out the adventure and get you quickly settled into your new accessible home. Contact The Arbor Move Team to get the process started! (734) 239-3796
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Nearly 40.7 million people in the United States live with a disability, and yet an overwhelming majority of single-family homes are not accessible. Luckily, there are ways to improve the accessibility and efficiency of a home while also improving its resilience and sustainability. After all, a green home is a healthy home, and everyone should have access to a healthy home.
That’s why our EcoWatch team put together a few ideas on how people can build or modify eco-friendly homes for those with disabilities:
Building and Designing Eco-Friendly Homes for People With Disabilities