Are you in the early stages of planning to buy a property? Do you not know where to start? Follow these tips to simplify the process, remove the stress, and enjoy your search for a property.
There are so many properties to choose from, you can't feasibly view every single one. The key is really to narrow down the options.
By setting some parameters for your search, you should niche down enough to find the perfect selection of properties for you to view.
In a busy world, we don't have time to view every property on the market at any given time. On average, a homebuyer will view around 7 or 8 properties before making offers. So how can you narrow down your search?
Needs and wants - there is a BIG difference. You may NEED 4 bedrooms, or you might actually need 3 bedrooms and somewhere to have a study. Perhaps there is a second reception room to double up as a study, or somewhere to have a home office in the garden. You may NEED a garage for your car. Or you may actually just need somewhere to store bikes and gardening equipment if you leave your car on the driveway anyway.
What could you compromise on, and what can you absolutely NOT compromise on? By setting these boundaries you have a starting point for narrowing down your search.
Budget - set a figure you are comfortable with and stick to it. Don't be swayed. If you technically could buy at £500k, but this is at the very top of your budget, consider the lifestyle you will have after purchasing the property. You may have the perfect home, but will you have to survive on baked beans for the rest of the year? Is that worth it to you? Fundamentally, there will ALWAYS be better properties, you will NEVER buy the best house in the country. If you push it just a bit higher, there will always be ‘better’ properties - that is why they come with a higher price tag. You will have to cap your spending somewhere. It can be easy to get distracted and quickly end up buying at the very top of your budget. That is fine if you are aware and comfortable with the repercussions. But you don't want to end up having to cut corners to your lifestyle to pay for the house.
Location - Decide on where you want to buy. Often the area is dictated by external factors, such as work or the kids' schools etc. After all, you can change most things about a property, but you can not change where it is.
If this is too restrictive, consider having primary and secondary areas. There are hundreds, sometimes thousands of properties for sale in most towns. After size and budget, you need a way to narrow down what you are looking for. Have an area you absolutely want and a secondary area that you would consider if the property was perfect.
Register - make sure that you are registered with the estate agents that cover the location you are trying to buy in. Tell them what you are looking for, where and for how much. Make sure you tell them about the distinction between your needs and wants. They may just have the perfect property to show you! Often agents will have an online registration tool so that you can complete it for yourself rather than having to call during office hours.
By setting parameters, you will narrow down your search considerably. This will save you time viewing properties that are not suitable for you.
If you have any questions about searching for a new home, or you want to be registered to be the first to know when properties come onto the market, get in touch.