Whether you’re a first-time buyer starting out on your property buying journey or looking to move up the property ladder after many years of owning a property, it is good to know or have a reminder of the ins and outs of buying a home.
Here are the top 5 things to be aware of when buying a property:
1. You’ll need a significant pot of money saved up
A deposit is the main and most significant amount of money you’ll need to save for ahead of buying a property. But in addition to a deposit, you’ll need an additional pot of money saved up to cover other costs such as removal costs, furnishing the property, renovation or decorating costs, estate agent fees, solicitor fees and surveying fees. Stamp duty is also a significant cost and needs to be paid on all property purchases in the UK that cost of over £125,000.
2. It is good to have a sound knowledge of mortgage options
The mortgage market is constantly changing so make sure you’re up to date with the latest product offerings. Read up about mortgages so that you know the difference between the different mortgage types. Do you need a fixed or variable, tracker or flexible mortgage? It can get quite confusing so it is a good idea to enlist the help of a mortgage broker to help you get a thorough understanding of what is available and what best suits your individual requirements.
3. You don’t need to accept your first mortgage offer
Although getting a mortgage offer can be a big relief and you may be tempted to accept it, remember that the first offer you get may not be the best mortgage for you. Wait to see if other offers come in before you make up your mind. Check out our online mortgage comparison to compare thousands of mortgages instantly.
4. You’ll need to deal with multiple people
The first person you’ll need to seek advice from and deal with is a mortgage advisor. Knowing from the start how much you are able to borrow will determine the type of property you go on to search for. You’ll likely need to liaise with several estate agents and once the property sale process is underway, you’ll need to appoint a solicitor to deal with the conveyancing. Depending on your property requirements, you may also need to deal with a host of builders and decorators to get your property ready to move into.
5. Understand the ins and outs of leasehold and freehold
If you are looking for a leasehold property such as a flat, remember to check the length of the lease. If there are not many years left on the lease, you may need to negotiate with the vendor to get the lease extended as part of your deal. Be aware that mortgage lenders usually require there to be at least 50 years left on the lease at the end of the mortgage term. If you are buying a freehold property, you will own the land that the property stands on and there is no time limit to the ownership period. For more info check our guide to tenure here.