What to do when buying your first home
Date online: 30/01/2014
Morris Property Management is an exclusive estate agent in Rochdale and one of the most satisfying parts of our business is seeing first time buyers finally get on the property ladder and buy their first house.
We are always asked for hints and tips as to what buyers should look for when they take the brave leap onto the market, and whilst the list is really as long as a piece of string, there are some fundamentals that all first time buyers should follow to ensure they are getting the best deal and property for them.
1) Save, save, save!
Obviously, the more money you have for a deposit, the better. Most mortgage brokers these days are asking for around a 10% deposit of the total house price, so having more will only bring your monthly mortgage repayments down in the future. This money HAS to be in the bank for the broker to see that you have the cash and therefore borrow the money to you to make the purchase.
2) What’s your credit?
Many people don’t even know what their credit score is, let alone understand it, so a good port of call is getting your full credit report sent to you. As a lender, the bank will look back at your credit history to ensure that everything is in order. By obtaining your credit report before you apply, you can put right any mistakes that may flag up on your report, such as accounts that aren’t yours, wrong addresses and payments that are marked as unpaid but have actually been paid.
3) Shop around
In the mortgage sense and the house sense, shop around. Don’t stick to one agency and don’t stick to one bank, find out what options are available to you and choose those that are most suited to what you are looking for. By ensuring that you don’t pigeon hole yourself, you will come out on top.
4) Learn about the property market
A little bit of knowledge never hurt anybody and the chances are that if you’re new to the buying game, you won’t be 100% certain as to how everything works. Many advice bureaus hold seminars for first time buyers and you can pop into most banks for a proper consultancy before you consider mortgages; nobody wants you to go into your new home blind and there are people out there who will help to give you the knowledge and confidence to buy.
Change your nightly read to something focused around the property industry and get online and do some research; nobody expects you to become an expert, but knowing the basics will certainly help in the long run.
5) Make a list of non-negotiables and desirables
Never just buy a house on a whim; make a succinct list of what your non-negotiable features are, as well as those which you would like to have. It is pointless buying a property if it doesn’t suit your lifestyle in the long run, so your non-negotiables should consist of things that you absolutely can’t live without such as a shower, garden etc. and your desirables could be things like the property having French doors or downstairs loo.
6) Get Viewing!
The best way you can get a feel for the market is by actually viewing properties. Cast your net further than you originally thought you would in order to get a gauge on value for money and see all the options available to you.
Attending open houses will also allow you to meet other buyers and share hints and tips based on your own personal experiences.
7) Have vision
Homes by nature are suited to the person or family that live in them, so not everything that you see when you view properties will be exactly to your taste. When viewing properties, go in with an open mind and remember that you will be able to put your own personal stamp on things should you buy the property. Take measurements to ensure that any existing furniture that you already have will fit in the home.