per•fect/adjective: having all the required or desirable elements, qualities, or characteristics; as good as it is possible to be.

A friend recently shared with me her frustration as she and her spouse continue their year-long search for the “perfect” house. “We’re being picky, I know; we have a list of requirements that few houses, within our budget, meet. Recently though I have started asking myself if we will be waiting forever for this mythical perfect house and will we end up stuck where we are for the rest of our lives!”

Since everyone has a different idea on what perfection is – there is no one answer to the question of when will perfection be found in a house.  There are, however, a few suggestions on how to approach finding such an elusive place.

First of all, take time to list all the things you want (or think you want). When the list is completed, break it into 3 sections:  must haves (location, structurally sound, style, etc.); would be nice to have IF it comes without additional cost; and the Deal Breakers (garage, 3 BR, 2 BA, etc.)

After the check list, make notes on every house you view, perhaps rate it from 1-5 with 1 being the lowest and 5 highest and review at the end of the day.

It is not uncommon for a home buyer to find “the perfect” home on the first property they view, but often it will be passed over in the hope that something better turns up. Very often it doesn't and all that remains is regret. The thing about choosing a property is that our individual needs are unique, so every property will have faults and although you may be looking a perfect ten but in reality a seven or eight out of ten is probably a pretty good find. So if you’re holding out for a perfect 10, it could be a long wait.

Learn to recognize what you want in the things you can't change - location, lot size, etc - and be flexible with the things you could change such as cosmetics, kitchens, bathrooms, decoration, etc. Those who have missed a great chance through holding out for a perfect ten would probably admit that it is better to be practical and flexible, especially if it’s a seller’s market or there is a personal or business need to be decisive and quick action is required to avoid disappointment.

Perfection is, after all, in the eye of the beholder!