Buying a house is a huge commitment – both personally and financially. You need to take your time with the process and shop around a little. It can be a stressful and overwhelming experience, especially if you are new to the property ladder. Be prepared to view several houses and keep an open mind. You might love a property that you didn’t expect to like. Look at multiple areas, different types of homes and do your research.
Here are a few things to watch out for when buying a house.
Identify what’s important to you
Make a list of everything you want in the home – and make each feature as essential or desirable. For example, a garden may be essential, while an extra bathroom could be desirable.
However, extra bathrooms are essential for some individuals and can make or break a house. The Bathroom Showroom found that one in ten homebuyers are willing to pay over £10,000 for an extra bathroom. In fact, a whopping 88% of potential buyers are willing to pay more for an added bathroom. You could have an en-suite in the master bedroom or separate rooms for the bath and shower. The younger generation is more interested in an extra bathroom than the 65+ age range.
Look out for structural damage
When you are viewing properties, you need to look out for tell-tale signs of structural damage. Look behind wardrobes and furniture for concealed damp spots and dark marks.
Before you put an offer on the property, always hire a surveyor to check out the home. They will identify any issues with the property, such as damp and mould.
Watch out for the condition of the windows and whether the paint is peeling off the frames. Windows are expensive to replace and can have a huge impact on the energy efficiency of the property. Check out the boiler in the property and consider replacing it with a combi boiler.
Get the timing right
If you find a property you like, visit it a few times and check out every room. You don’t want to jump in too fast and find issues later down the line. At the same time, you don’t want to wait too long and risk losing the property to another buyer. Weight up the cost, area and potential renovations before making a permanent decision. Overbidding can cause issues with appraisal and mortgage. Stay patient and ask your letting agent for advice when you need it.
Make sure your potential home is just right before you make an offer.