Stepping onto the ladder - 10 Tips for First Time House Buyers

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10 tips for first time home buyers - based upon my own experience of buying residential property

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Stepping onto the ladder - 10 Tips for First Time House Buyers

  1. 1. 10 Tips when buying a house
  2. 2. Caveats • Mainly focusing on buying, not selling • Just advice borne of my experience, not proven • Always read the small print! • …what follows may seem scary but its actually exciting!
  3. 3. Offer accepted in Feb Exchanged on 30th May Completed 30th May Daughter born 31st May!
  4. 4. Know what you want Know what you want
  5. 5. 1. Have an idea of what you want! • • • • • • • House, flat, semi detached, detached etc Period (Victorian, 30s, new build) As new or own project? 2 bed, 3 bed, kitchen-diner? Garden? Driveway or road parking? Do you plan to buy to let / rent out spare room?
  6. 6. Know your budget Know your budget
  7. 7. 2. Know your own budget • • • • What deposit do you have? What can you borrow? What is your salary/combined? What is your annual monthly spend (outgoings)? • What disposable income is remaining? • What can you afford to spend per month?
  8. 8. What’s the mortgage landscape? What’s the mortgage landscape?
  9. 9. 3. Understand what mortgages are on offer • Fixed v Tracker – Risk v Consistency – What is the Bank of England hinting at? • Understand what the variance will do to your budget • Look at the fees! – Typically anything from £99 to £1,999! • Understand the tie ins – Can I repay early? – Exit fees?
  10. 10. Estate Agents – friend or foe? Estate Agents – friend or foe?
  11. 11. 4. Estate Agents & Research • • • • • • • Set up searches with the likes of RightMove, Zoopla, etc Download their mobile apps Register with estate agents and tell them firmly what you want Arrange days to visit numerous properties Get to know your estate agent – make them work for you! Visit at least 10 to get a feel Save numbers on your phone • • • Don’t be afraid to say I don’t like it Be on front foot, try to be proactive rather than reactive Be prepared for calls at any time of day
  12. 12. 4. Estate Agents & Research • Look at houseprices sold.com to get an idea of historical pricing • Download propertybee.com to check history of property listings • Look at catchment areas, schools, transport links etc
  13. 13. 5. Understand the sales cycle
  14. 14. Solicitors & Brokers Solicitors & Brokers
  15. 15. 6. Brokers & Solicitors Brokers •Will do a lot of the hard yards and maths for you •Prepared to spend 60 mins setting up your profile •They have good reach but not 100% •Make them work for their commission (to the lender) •Don’t be afraid to say no thanks •Most Sunday papers rate mortgages on a weekly basis Solictors •Get quotes – Speak to friends – Local v nationwide •Consider online conveyencer who update via email/SMS
  16. 16. Make me an offer… Make me an offer…
  17. 17. 7. Make me an offer! • Know what the stamp duty threshold you are in – £125-250k = 1% – £250-500k = 3% – £500k+ = 5% • Research previous sold prices • Review neighbouring houses (don’t be afraid to knock on doors) • Have a mortgage in principle ready • Be clear about your current position • Vendors want to see the “quality” of your offer • Give yourself room for negotiation on price
  18. 18. Budgets will rise! Budgets will rise!
  19. 19. 8. Have a surplus! • • • • • • • • • Costs will rise so budget for… Removals (cost defined by distance, volume) Buildings insurance once exchanged Homebuyers Report (£250-500) v Structural Report (£1,000+) Solicitors (£500+) Land Registry fee (£200-500) Local Searches (£50-100) Estate Agent Fees (0.75-2%) if selling 1st month mortgage tends to be 25% bigger
  20. 20. Time to box up! Time to box up!
  21. 21. 9. Move day • Consider packing service from removals team (£300+ extra) • Note all your gas, electricity readings on old/new • Inform all suppliers etc • Leave address labels or forwarding address • Leave instructions to your buyers (if any) • Keep a screwdriver to hand • Try out your new local chinese! • Go meet the neighbours (they will be as curious as you!)
  22. 22. 10. Keep it human • Be open and honest • Avoid playing games • Meet the buyer and seller. Look them in the eye. Shake hands if you can. • Don’t be an arse!

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