Have you ever shopped for a gift and had no idea what to buy? You may have gone from store to store hoping for inspiration, only to discover you wasted hours. Obviously, if you had a clear idea of what you wanted to find, you’d find it faster.

The same holds true when looking for a home. The clearer you are about the kind of home you want, the more likely you are to find it – and get it!

The best way to get clarity is to start big and then go small. That simply means you start by identifying the biggest thing – the area in which you want to live. What are the characteristics of the ideal neighborhood for you? Make a list.

Next, go from biggest down one notch and think about the type of home you want. Size? Features?

Finally, think about the inside of your next dream home. Consider the number of bedrooms, size of the kitchen or living room, and any special features you might want.

Have fun imagining the next perfect home for you. You may discover it’s available on the market now – or maybe it will be soon.