Whether it’s your first home or your fifth, moving is both exciting and exhausting. Finding an accessible home comes with its own challenges, but it is always worth the extra effort. Here are some ways you can make your experience a smooth one.
Before You Search
In order to lessen the stress of house hunting, first-time homebuyers should complete a few initial steps before they even begin to search for a house. Ensure that your credit report is accurate before applying for a mortgage—a high score can mean lower interest rates. When you find a lender, make sure all your important documents, including pay stubs and tax returns, are organized and ready to be handed over. You’ll also want to determine what you can afford for a home by looking at your budget and factoring in the down payment and other home-related expenses. Lastly, you should find a good real estate agent to make the home buying process go much smoother.
Thankfully, there are more options than ever before when it comes to accessible housing. No matter what you’re looking for—an apartment, a house in town, or even a tiny home—you have options. Your state may have online resources that connect tenants in need of accessible housing with sellers or renters, and many websites have search engines that filter different requirements. If you truly are stuck, talk to a realtor in the town where you hope to move. They will have a better understanding of what is available and be able to help you find a home in your price range.
Amending a Good House into a Great One
Sometimes, the home we fall in love with ends up needing a bit of work to make it perfect. Or, maybe the houses in our price range aren’t quite right, but with a little work, it can be modified. Whatever the case may be, if a home falls slightly short of your needs, you have options to adapt it. Some changes, such as remodeling the bathroom or kitchen, can be pricey, but not all adjustments will impact your household budget. In fact, many small alterations can be easily added without much fuss. It only takes a little reading, the parts and then an afternoon to get the work done. Just be certain that you get estimates for any major repairs or remodels before you make an offer. You’ll need to factor those costs into your total budget, after all.
What to Look for in a City
Even if you adore a certain house or neighborhood, it does not mean that this will be the perfect home. Before you visit a town, look at Google Maps and see how navigable it is. If there isn’t enough information available, try the app AccessMap, which has been designed specifically for those who need disabled-friendly directions. It even shows where sidewalks are the most even and where curbs are lowest. You need to think of non-accessible concerns, too, such as crime rates, hospital availability, and whatever else is relevant to you.
Before You Move In
Before you bring your belongings to your new place, confirm that the home is secure and livable. Even if your house is brand new, ensure that it’s clean enough for your possessions. You also want to be certain that your utilities have been updated to include your new address, and that your mail gets redirected. Of course, one of our biggest priorities is home security, so give yourself assurances by finding a reputable locksmith.
Moving Day Made Easy
Moving day is exhausting. Even when we have researched which movers are best, have things planned out, and made sure the weather will be okay, there are lingering stresses and worries. To make things easier, get plenty of sleep and have snacks premade and ready to eat for you and the moving team to sustain morale. Keep lots of water around, as moving is thirsty work, and be sure you have packed an overnight bag. Even if your boxes are labeled, no one wants to spend the evening of a tiring day searching for kitchen utensils, pajamas, and hygiene products!
Don’t be overwhelmed. Yes, there is quite a lot to do, but you can get it all done with proper planning. This is a thrilling adventure, one that should bring joy, not stress.
Author: Tanya Lee at AbilityVillage.org
Image Courtesy of Pixabay