For first-time buyers, knowing the difference between what you want and what you need can be critical. The Victoria real estate market is as competitive as they come, so you’ll need to cut through the noise if you want to get ahead. As much as we all want certain things, they sometimes get in the same of what’s realistic. This means identifying what you can’t live without.

The best advice we can give you is to write down what you want and what you really need. As the list grows, you’ll begin to understand the kind of home you should be looking for and the expectations you should set.

Let’s take a look at a few of the categories you should consider when putting together a list of your wants and needs:



There’s no shame in wanting to live in an upscale neighbourhood. In fact, location is one of the most critical categories as it can affect your overall quality of life. But, as much as we’d all like to live in The Uplands, there are plenty of fantastic areas throughout Victoria and the rest of Vancouver Island. Understand that you don’t need a mansion or multi-million dollar property to be comfortable.

Some key questions you should ask yourself: Are you looking for a family friendly neighbourhood? How close to certain schools do you need to be? Would you rather live in the city or further out in the suburbs? What exactly are you looking for from the community?

As soon as you can pinpoint the answers to these questions, you’ll be able to narrow down the neighbourhoods than could work for you.


Lot Size

How much space do you really need? Should the yard accommodate kids, pets and parties? This is a question many first-time buyers ask themselves, as they’re not completely sure how they’ll grow into the space. As a result, knowing what you want and what you need can be tough.

Consider your current situation and where you may be going. If you plan on adopting pets any time soon, a larger yard may make more sense. Outgrowing your home isn’t something anyone wants to go through, so try and hash out how you’ll use the space.


Number of Rooms

Similarly, you’re going to need enough interior space to house everyone in your family. If kids are on the way, you’ll need multiple bedrooms, more living space, and other areas for them to grow. The size of your of current and future family will inform the sort of space you’ll need to live in.



Amenities tend to attract housing wants. There are so many upgrades one can make in their home, but oftentimes they aren’t practical and should be prioritized behind more urgent renovations. For instance, those marble countertops in the kitchen would look great, but maybe you should invest in that upgraded plumbing system first? Although it’s these kind of cosmetic changes we want to rush to first, they should often be left until last.


A good rule of thumb is to be honest and open with yourself. When thinking about your future home, its easy to fall into fantasies. Identify what you need and then go from there.

No matter what your wants and needs are, Pemberton Holmes is here to help you. We’ve got Victoria real estate on lock, so contact us for anything you may need.