When you decide to start shopping for a single-family home, you'll talk with your real estate agent about the features you want. Some of these features you'll be sure of. For example, maybe you have two children, so you absolutely need three or more bedrooms. Other features, however, tend to get tossed on the "must have" list without much thought. You may figure these features are essential because your friends have them or because you've seen them in a lot of magazines. But if you take a second look, you may realize you can be more flexible on the following features.
A Laundry Room
If you've always had a separate laundry room before, then you may figure you need one in your new home. But if you find a home you otherwise love that doesn't have a dedicated laundry room, you should still consider making an offer. With laundry equipment in a hall, the bathroom, or the basement, your laundry process will have to be a little different, but you'll soon adapt. You can fold clothing on your bed rather than on a table in the laundry room. You can keep dirty clothing in hampers in your closets, rather than in the laundry room, too.
An Eat-In Kitchen
Eat-in kitchens are popular these days. They do have their advantages. It's nice to be able to cook while others sit at the table doing homework or chatting with you. However, if you find a home you otherwise love with a smaller kitchen and separate dining room, you can totally make that work. Your living room or dining room will just have to serve as the "family hub" rather than the kitchen. And having a separate dining room has its advantages, too. You can declare it a phone-free zone so everyone actually talks during meals, and you can decorate it uniquely so mealtimes feel special.
Wall-to-wall carpet can make a home feel comfortable and cozy. However, you probably don't want to turn down a suitable home because it is not carpeted. Many families move into their home and then realize that having wall-to-wall carpeting causes more problems than it solves. Carpet traps pet hair, other allergens, bacteria, and viruses. It costs a lot to have carpet professionally shampooed, and carpet can get smelly if you don't shampoo it. Hard floors are so much easier to keep clean, and you can always add padding, where needed, with some area rugs.
If you're shopping for a single-family home, don't assume you need an eat-in kitchen, carpets, and a laundry room. If you find a home you love but it's lacking these so-called essentials, it may well still be the home for you.