Just because you’ve saved up the house deposit and got a mortgage agreed, doesn’t mean you are any closer to that dream of owning your first house. Don’t let your heart get the better of you, even if you’ve fallen head over heels for the perfect house, there’re a few things to consider before you put in an offer.
Yes, you can afford to buy a house, but can you afford to run it? Many people let their hearts run away with them if they find a house much bigger than they were expecting. Making an offer without thinking about the kind of costs keeping a large house can entail could mean that you find yourself selling up long before you were expecting to. Check out what sort of taxes you’re committing to before you put an offer in on any home. Get quotes for homeowner insurance for the property and think about how the area might affect your car insurance premiums.
Make sure you get a survey done on the house and have a thorough understanding of the appliances it comes with. What sort of heating system does it run on? How efficient is it? These things are important so that you can budget living costs and can help you to secure the property at a reduced rate. If you know you will need to invest in a new heating system or other essential appliance, take the cost of that into consideration when making an offer. Make sure the buyer is aware that that is what you are doing. It puts you in a strong position when discussing the sale price and means you won’t be hit with costs you weren’t expecting a few months after moving in. If you do find you need a new heating or air-conditioning service, http://www.lairdandson.com will give you a good idea of installation and repair costs.
- The Neighbourhood
Think about how long you intend to stay in this dream home. Taxes and moving can be an expensive business, and there’s no point buying a house that suits your lifestyle now if you are likely to change jobs in a couple of years or have children. Think long term. Are there good schools nearby? What are the local amenities like? Is there a good range of things to do at the weekend? If you are moving somewhere new entirely, it pays to do your homework. Check out crime rate statistics for the local area and look at the sorts of sports and social clubs that are running. Think realistically about the kind of life you are likely to live in this neighbourhood and make sure you are confident that you would be happy living there.
What sort of a state is your ideal home in? Is it going to need a new kitchen or bathroom? Maybe it’s a complete renovation project, in which case you need to think carefully about what kind of investment in money and time that will require. Whatever state the house is in, seek advice from a structural engineer or surveyor. This unbiased third party will be able to advise you in many ways. They provide an impartial estimate on how much the house is worth and let you know about any jobs that are likely to need doing in the next few years, such as a replacement roof. If you are happy to undertake the work required, don’t let it put you off making an offer. Again, just make sure your offer reflects the cost of completing such work and don’t let yourself get pushed beyond your means. If you can’t afford to buy the house and do the work, walk away. There’s plenty more on the market.