It’s that time of year when we start to look forward to what’s to come in the months ahead. A new year can be a fresh start, and it’s a wonderful opportunity to explore your options and think about what you’d like to achieve. If you’ve been thinking about moving, you’re desperate to get onto the property ladder, or you’re wondering whether it’s time for a change of scenery, here are some house hunting tips that may come in handy.
Creating a wish list
If you’re pondering your next move, it’s always wise to have a list of priorities in mind. For many people, the location is crucial. If you know exactly where you want to live, this will help you narrow down your search options. If you’re open to ideas, spend some time researching areas that catch your eye, find out about house prices and the strength of the market and have a look around at what’s available. Once you’ve decided upon a search area, you can turn your attention to the actual property. What kind of house or flat do you want to buy? Are you interested in a brand new house or do you dream of opening the door to the sight of cornices, open fires, and exposed beams? Think about the size and the layout, and decide which features you can’t live without and extras on which you’d be prepared to compromise.
Old versus new
This is a quandary that many buyers find themselves facing. Do you go for the low maintenance new home with modern interiors, open plan rooms, and insulation as standard, or are you drawn to older, quirkier homes with their distinctive character? Like all things in life, there are pros and cons. New homes benefit from lower energy bills, the decor is usually neutral, which gives you a blank canvas, and houses are usually geared towards life in the 21st century. Older homes may require more upkeep and more intensive maintenance, you might find that you’re taking on a major decorating project and the layout might not lend itself to family life. At the end of the day, the choice is yours, and often, it’s a matter of taste and personal preference. The best thing to do is look at a range of properties, and see which option appeals to you more.
Paying the right price
Your budget is key when toying with the idea of relocating or becoming a homeowner for the first time. To get an idea of how much you can spend, you’ll need to look at the value of your deposit and then figure out how much you can borrow in the form of a mortgage. If you’re a first-time buyer, you can benefit from schemes that will boost your deposit, and there are also preferable mortgage rates available. It’s wise to set up an appointment with a financial adviser to explore your options and find the best mortgage. Once you know how much is in the pot, you can search online, contact local agencies, and set up some viewings. Go back as many times as it takes to be sure that you’ve found the right property for you, and then negotiate to get the best deal. If you’re a cash buyer, you have no chain, or the house has been on the market for a long time, there should be room for manoeuvre.
Could the new year bring you a new home? If you’re considering buying a new house, hopefully, this guide has given you some useful hints.