For many people, the process of purchasing their first home can seem an intimidating and daunting task. Due to lack of previous experience, you may be unfamiliar with the process and therefore miss some of the essential preparation that you MUST take before completely the transaction. That is why the team here at White Horse Surveyors have put together the following article. Outlining three essential steps for any first-time property buyer…
Essential Tips – Calculate all the associated costs
One of the first and most important steps for any prospective property buyer, is to make sure that they are aware of all the potential expenditure associated with their move. This includes:
- Removal Services – Unless you own very few belongings, you are going to require a removals van to effectively transport all your worldly possessions into your new residence.
- Property Surveys – To help ensure that you are making a confident and informed purchase, you should request an independent RICS qualified Surveyor to inspect the property on your behalf.
- Stamp Duty – If you are buying a house worth over £250,000 then you will also have to pay a land tax on top of the purchase price. However, there are exemptions, and it is always worth double-checking to see if you can avoid this extra charge.
- Legal Fees – The legal advice and personal guidance of professionals with many years of experience in the field is invaluable but will undoubtedly generate a hefty price tag.
- Home Repairs – If your property survey ends up highlighting a number of issues that require immediate attention (or you were planning on renovating the home yourself) it’s important to set aside a substantial portion of your budget for repairs.
- Furnishing – If you are first-time homeowner, you will also need to factor in the costs of furniture, lighting, white-goods, fixture, fittings, etc.
By taking the time to calculate these costs, you can help to ensure that you are not getting any expected and/or expensive surprises. To learn more about budgeting for your first home, simply click here.
Essential Tips – Make sure that your Mortgage is ‘in-principle’
One of the steps that can potentially help you to secure a property is a Mortgage ‘In-Principle’. This term refers to a written statement that outlines the amount of money your lender is willing to lend you.
By obtaining this document, you will likely add legitimacy to your purchase – especially if you are a first-time property buyer. Not to mention that you will be receiving a guaranteed figure from your lender, giving you a much clearer idea of your potential investment in the property.
For more information on a range of Mortgage schemes, simply check out our blog on the topic here.
Essential Tips – Research the neighborhood & amenities
Many factors make up the value of a residential home. Whilst it is important to consider the number of bedrooms as well as the quality of kitchen and bathrooms it is also essential that you take the time to research the local area. This includes the following local amenities:
- Health Care – Location of General Practitioners, Dentists, Hospitals, Accident & Emergency, etc.
- Education – Proximity to Primary and Secondary Schools as well as recent Ofsted ratings/reports.
- Transport – Accessibility of the public transport system, most notably bus and train routes.
- Leisure Facilities – Local gyms, swimming pools and parks.
- Crime Rates – Recent burglaries, anti-social behavior, or any other recorded misdemeanors.
In addition to this research, it is also important that you visit the neighborhood yourself and preferably at different times of the day. This will give you a more rounded view of the area and what it will be like to live there.
For more advice on the process of moving to a new neighborhood, simply check out our blog on the topic here.