What First Time Buyers Sometimes Forget – or Never Even Knew!
Most issues associated with the purchase of a residential property are not unique to first time buyers. However, if you have never been through the property purchase process, then there is a greater possibility that something might catch you out.
Two heads are better than one: When viewing a property, take a friend or relative with you. You will have a great deal to absorb in a relatively short period of time, during a viewing, and it is easy to miss what may turn out to be critical details in the heat of the moment. Your companion may have noticed things that you did not and vice versa. If you feel that you have not taken in the whole picture regarding the property, arrange a second viewing.
Initial costs: Be sure to calculate ALL the preliminary costs associated with your property purchase. Most buyers remember to include solicitors fees, stamp duty, mortgage arrangement fees and removal costs but do not always allocate enough money to cover furnishings (and remedial building work in an older property).
Living costs: If you have been living with your parents, before moving into your own home, you might be surprised just how many bills you now have to pay and how large some of them are – council tax, water, electricity, gas, contents insurance, building insurance, etc. Council tax and water bills usually arrive at the start of the financial year and can take a big chunk out of your bank account every April, so consider arranging to pay some or all of your bills in monthly instalments in order to smooth the financial load, throughout the year.
School catchment area: Whether or not you have (or are planning) to have children, remember that the quality of local state schools exerts a major influence on property prices. A house in a reputable school catchment area will always be easier to resell.
Amenities: Decide what type of amenities matter to you. Do you want to be near shops, pubs and restaurants or would closeness to a park matter more to you Buying the right property is not simply a matter of bricks and mortar.
Car considerations: The cost of your car insurance will depend very much on whether your property is classified as being in a high crime or low crime area. If you have a lock-up garage or even just off-street parking, then your car insurance premiums will be reduced.
Public transport: Being close (but perhaps not too close!) to train and underground stations or a main bus route is beneficial, especially if you commute to your place of work by public transport.