Finding the right home is key and difficult but this guide goes some way to set you on the right path as a first-time buyer.You must always consider Mortgage Fees, your current credit score, the types of mortgages and mortgage schemes available to you when home shopping.
** 1)Define your target
Defining your target is probably the easiest bit. For this, all you need to know is how much you can afford and what Government schemes you qualify for. This will allow you to know what price range you can shop in and of course what regions.You can then begin to put your savings away.
2) Begin browsing within your criteria
So now you Know your budget and as a great first-time buyer, you have gone some way to setup your help to buy ISA or improve your knowledge on the help to buy equity loan. It is now time to start actively looking for homes.
The main property portals are:
rightmove is easy to use and has an array of data. You can also get a street view due to its integration with Google maps
Zoopla is especially good with historical listings. It allows you to see what house prices went for in the area and includes an ever-growing array of data.
On the market is somewhat new but it’s always worth a look as it is competitive and some homes may be listed there but not on Zoopla and Rightmove.
You can even set an alert for particular streets or price ranges on the above portals which will give you a bit of a headstart in making contact to the sellers.
3) Choose an estate agent
As a first time buyer it might be worth getting expert advice from a local estate agent once you have found a region you intend to buy in. Local estate agents are incredibly important as they will usually have more insights on the local area as well as knowledge of the local housing market. Will it rise or fall ?
Some homes are sold before they appear online, so it’s also worth getting in contact with an estate agent to get an inflow of unlisted properties before they reach your competitors.
Local estate agents will usually have information on the level of demand in the area, the prices you can expect to pay for different house types and the average selling time.
To see what any house, anywhere, went for try sold-price sites such as Nethouseprices and Zoopla.
4) Derisk the region
It is also a great idea to check got the Police crime-mapping websites which show local hotspots and breakdown recorded crimes such as burglary and anti-social behavior. Elsewhere, there’s free information on school league tables and even noise level checks.
You must also consider the amount of development going on in the area from new buildings, Industrial estates or military facilities as this might greatly affect your daily commute or even worse the future value of your home in a negative way.
You can use the Government’s Planning Portal to see what planning applications have been made in your intended region.
Environmental risks should also be considered. E.g Pollution from chemical plants or flood risks.
5)Dig even deeper**
Ask the neighbors about the area, view the house at different times and definitely take a walk in the neighborhood.There are just so many facts you will learn by going that step extra.
In any case, your mortgage lender will most likely require a pre-purchase inspection but if you can get a cheap one done then do so before making an offer on the property.
Take a closer look at the Council tax bands and any predicted rise. Look at the cost of Fuel in the area. Look at the cost of food. If the property is a lease then inquire about the ground charges.
Look especially for
Worn out wood
Functional central heating