How to Stay Organized During the Homebuying Process

When it comes to home buying, there’s more to do than just touring homes. There are a lot of tasks that need to be juggled in addition to your day-to-day obligations. It’s easy to become overwhelmed!

Organizing your home search will make the home buying process feel smoother and more manageable. Before you start looking for your new home in the Bay Area, check out some of these organization tips.

Create a master file system

There is a lot of paperwork involved in finding a new home. From financial documents to marketing materials, it can become difficult keeping track of every piece of paper. To help keep things organized, create a master filing system to hold all of your house-hunting related documents so everything is in one place.

You can do this with a physical folder or a digitally. There’s plenty of cloud-based storage apps that make it possible to access the information from any device. You can create folders for each individual property and include your general impressions (more on this later), property listing links, virtual tour links, and photos.

Give homes nicknames

Popularized by Chip and Joanna Gaines, create unique nicknames for the homes you tour. Nicknames help you remember each home as you think back through the homes you visited. You can use a specific feature, like ‘Blue Door House,’ to denote each home.

Take detailed notes

The average homebuyer views about 9 homes before buying. Chances are, unless you have a photographic memory, you’ll probably start confusing the homes you’ve seen. Avoid that by taking notes of each home you tour. In addition to the chosen nickname, jot down your impressions of each home, features, and anything else that stood out to you. This will make it easier to compare homes later.

Here are some things to take note of:

  • Basic home information (price, square footage, bed/bath count, location)
  • Home style and features (number of stories, lot location, etc.)
  • Your thoughts on the neighborhood and the home itself
  • Pros and cons of the home
  • Potential changes you’d make

Take photos

Don’t rely just on the listing photos; take your own while touring. Homes don’t always look the same in real life as they do in photos. Taking pictures will help you recall particular details of a home and make it easier to compare homes when it is time to debrief. Just be sure to properly label the photos!

Set alerts

You’ve got better things to do than constantly refreshing your Zillow app. Use technology to your advantage by setting up alerts for the specific type of home you’re looking for so you’re automatically notified when a home that fits your criteria is listed.

Organizing your home search is a gift you give yourself. You’ll feel more in control of the buying process while saving valuable time. Once you’re ready to buy a home, visit us at to learn more about our communities throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. You can schedule a private, self-guided tour and virtual appointments in any of our Sales Studios. We look forward to welcoming you to your new home!

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