Here are some points to add to your checklist:
CHOOSING A PROPERTY TYPE – WHAT ARE YOUR CHILD’S NEEDS?
• Does your child need his or her own room?
• Does your child require mobility assistance like ramps or bars?
• Is your child still trying to learn how to walk? For instance, most couples who have a toddler would prefer to have a bungalow layout, where there is a big open plan for the living room and kitchen. This is because their child would be just trying to learn how to walk at that time, and it is necessary that they have sufficient space to crawl around. Also, as toddlers are naturally curious and will explore unhesitatingly, stairs could be no-no for many.
IS THE SURROUNDING AREA OF YOUR POTENTIAL HOME SAFE FOR YOUR KID?
• Does the property have its own yard and/or gate?
• Is the property within an exclusive compound or a small neighbourhood?
• Is there a children’s playground or recreational area nearby or within the property compound? Being adventurous, children will always want to play outside, hence your child will be spending a lot of their time outdoors. Parents should inspect the neighbourhood to make sure that it is safe to play in and does not pose any danger from busy roads and oncoming traffic.
SECURITY FEATURES IN YOUR POTENTIAL HOME – DO THEY EXIST?
• Are the glass windows tempered and are they equipped with iron grills?
• Does the property have an emergency exit in case of fire, etc?
• Does the door have a lock system from the inside?
These safety features not only adds a sense security, they also provide convenience in executing daily activities. For instance, an automatic gate will definitely come in handy after a grocery run and your hands are already full. An electronic keypad to open and lock your door is another safety feature that will be a boon to parents with inquisitive toddlers.
SCREEN YOUR POTENTIAL NEIGHBOURS
• Ask your broker or developer what are the types of residents living within the residential compound or neighbourhood.
• You should also carry out a physical site visit to observe the neighbourhood for yourself and probably even enquire a friendly neighbour for community insights.
Some developers prequalify potential housebuyers who are interested in their town house units. The prequalification process is an important step to assure that all future residents share the same lifestyle habits, preventing any bad neighbour experiences.