Whether you are just starting off on the property ladder, looking for your dream family home or looking for that perfect retirement home, buying a property should be an exciting period in your life no matter what stage of life you are at. However, sometimes finding your perfect property can become a constant headache as you are greeted with unexpected costs and factors throughout the buying process.
At Bluestone our team experts have put together a selection of top tips to help you find your next property with as little hassle as possible.
Choosing your estate agent
Your estate agent will play a major role from helping you find your new property to the much anticipated completion stage.
If you haven’t already found a property that you are interested in, chatting to your prospective estate agent can be a practical first step. Estate agents like Bluestone are able to keep an eye out for new properties coming on to the market and contact you straight away if we think there is a property that might match your requirements.
Attaining your mortgage in principle
When buying a property, you need to be pretty clued up on what mortgage deals will be available to you. Before you start your property search it is worth applying for a mortgage in principle so that you have a reasonable idea of the price range of properties that you are able to afford.
Having a mortgage in principle can also benefit you during the buying process, not only can it speed things up once your offer has been accepted, if the seller is looking for a reliable buyer they are likely to favour someone to buy their property who has their finances arranged and in order.
Arranging your Finances and Budgeting
Without careful financial planning and budgeting you are likely to be hit with hidden costs. We have put together a list of some costs that you might want to consider before you start.
Legal Fees – Make sure you ask your solicitor for a full breakdown of the costs. It is always worth speaking to family friends and see if there are any solicitors that they would recommend. Your Estate Agent should also be able to point you in the right direction, at Bluestone we often work closely with a number of reputable local solicitors.
Stamp Duty – When buying a property, you may be required to pay stamp duty, the amount depends on how much the property that you are looking to buy is worth. For more information click here.
Detailed Survey – A Homebuyers or structural survey might be an added expense but it is an expense that can prevent you from having to fork out a lump some of cash in the future. This detailed inspection of the property will alert you to any structural or substantial repairs that need to be done to the property. In some instances, the results of a survey can change the buyer’s decision. We highly recommend getting a survey done on the property that you have had an accepted offer for.
Insurance – You will need to have your new property insured from the day that the property swaps over to your ownership. Bluestone can arrange cover for you without the hassle. We provide independent advice and can source quotes from multiple insurers to find a policy that is right for you. Click here for more details
Viewing the property
Making a list of questions to ask the vendor before the viewing is a good idea.
At your viewing you might want to keep a look out for the following things, so that you can make an informed decision:
– Has the property had a damp proof course?
– Has the property been insulated?
– Is the property double glazed?
– How old is the heating system?
– How old is the electrical installation?
– Are there enough power points?
– Is the plumbing working efficiently?
– Are there any defects?
– What are the neighbours like?
You should also carry out some research on the local area. Is it close to local amenities, is there good access to transport links etc…
Putting in an offer
Once you are certain that the property is the right property for you, you should let your estate agent know as soon as possible so that they are able to pass on your proposed offer to the vendor. When putting in an offer people often propose a lower offer than the asking price, you must prepare yourself if this offer gets rejected. Just remember you don’t want to miss out on your dream property at the very last hurdle, especially if there are other people also interested in the same property.
If you have any further questions about buying a property our, Bluestone is here to help you.