To buy or not to buy
With your desire comes the fundamental question - does owning a home or office make sense for your particular circumstances? The first and foremost question you need to ask yourself - do you actually need it or you just want a new one? The latter allows you more time for searching.
Consider the market scenario
By market scenario we mean if the market is up or down. You may do some research online or talk to real-estate agents. Currently, the prices for apartments have dropped. Good time to look?
Evaluate based on amenities
For a home, is there a school, bazaar, hospital nearby? Does the place provide supermarket, park and gym? You might want to consider also consider how close your relatives and friends live. If you need an office, does it have parking facilities for clients and employees? How about power backup?
Decide on the area where you want an apartment. This involves spending some time roaming around the area looking for some basic facilities such as availability of bus and taxi services. Talk to the locals if possible or talk to some friends who live in the area. For those looking to buy an office space, should consider accessibility to public transport and the distance of office from home. It's always important to cut down on commute.
Set a budget
Done with the first two tasks? It's time to set a budget. Do it based on your market research. Think of the ways you'll finance your property. Set a limit and stick to it because it is common to think you can keep extending just that little bit extra.
Areas you should avoid
It would be wise to avoid areas that see massive traffic congestions every day. Also make sure the area doesn't go under water after a 30-minute downpour. You won't like to swim in your office outfit.
Snap a pic
When you're out on the street looking for properties don't forget to snap the surroundings. It'll help you evaluate the options better in comparison.
Consider rental/resale value
Unless you're planning to live in the apartment for the rest of your life, consider the resale/rental potential. It's a must for those looking for an investment property.
First impressions don't always matter
Now that you've found your possible home or office, inspect it properly. If needed take an experienced buyer/engineer/interior designer with you. First impression matters but it can be deceitful at times.