Buying a home is exciting, and for most people, it’s the biggest type of purchase you’ll make in a lifetime, but there’s also a lot to consider.
We've got 5 questions that you should ask yourself before you choose your next home.
1. How much can you afford?
Knowing how much you can borrow is always the best place to start. Finding out is easy - simply make an appointment with one of our professional in-branch mortgage advisers to discuss what you can afford. Once you’ve spoken to an adviser, you’ll have a good idea of your budget.
2. Where do you want to live?
Decide what’s most important to you and your family. Do you want to live somewhere urban or rural? Do you need to be close to your place of work or are you working from home more now and need more space for a home office? Is a garden important? What about a garage – do you want one or will a shed do? What about schools – do you want to be in a certain catchment area? We have a school location tool on our website which shows you which schools are located close to the properties we’re selling. Simply click on the mortarboard symbol on the map on each of our property detail pages to show you which schools are located nearby. You can even see their latest OFSTED reports too. Once you’ve decided on your needs and priorities, use these to define your search criteria.
3. What’s the neighbourhood like?
Once you have identified potential areas, take a closer look into each neighbourhood to help you narrow down a shortlist. Walk or drive around, talk to neighbours if you can and check crime statistics online. Decide what’s essential to you and what would be nice to have.
4. New or second-hand?
Just as there are benefits of new homes, there are advantages of buying an older house too. If money is tight, you might be tempted to look for a ‘doer-upper’ but always do the maths first and consider whether a newer home could be more cost effective in the long-run.
5. What do you want from your home?
Write down everything that you consider important in the home you plan to buy - the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, how many living areas, kitchen/diner or separate dining room, outdoor space, garage, even high-speed broadband. Then look back through your list and identify those areas where you’d be willing to compromise and those which are non-negotiable. It should make choosing your next home easier.
You can view our latest homes for sale or to rent here, or better still, why not register your details and search criteria with our offices. All our teams have an unrivalled knowledge of the local areas and are best placed to advise you. They can also let you know if a property matching your criteria is coming up for sale before it comes to market.