Finding Property For Sale – A Comprehensive Guide
Buying property is one of the most significant financial decisions you can make. With the UK housing market being highly competitive, finding the right property at the right price can be a challenging process. This comprehensive guide provides tips and advice on successfully finding property for sale.
Define Your Must-Haves And Deal-Breakers
Before beginning your property search, take time to identify your absolute must-haves and deal-breakers. Consider factors like:
- Location – Specific neighborhoods, commuting distance to work/schools, rural or urban setting.
- Property type – Detached, semi-detached, terraced house, bungalow, apartment.
- Bedrooms/bathrooms – Enough for your needs? Multiple bathrooms?
- Outside space – Garden, balcony, parking.
- Special features – Waterfront, annex, garages, storage.
Knowing these ahead of time allows you to filter listings efficiently and not waste time viewing unsuitable properties.
Set Your Budget
Work out the maximum you can afford to spend by factoring in:
- Deposit amount
- Mortgage repayments
- Solicitor fees, taxes, insurance
- Maintenance and improvement costs
Be realistic – purchasing at the very limit of your budget could leave you financially vulnerable. Remember costs extend beyond just the purchase price.
Finance – Secure Mortgage Agreement in Principle
Before viewing properties, speak to a mortgage advisor and secure an Agreement in Principle. This confirms what a lender is willing to lend you. Knowing this allows you to confidently view properties in your price range.
Choose How To Search For Property Listings
There are several options for finding properties for sale:
- Online property sites – Pageads .Easy to filter by location and preferences.
- Newspapers – Print and online classifieds. Traditional but effective.
- Estate agents – Many don’t advertise full listings online. Worth registering your criteria with local branches.
- Property apps – Convenient way to get notifications of new relevant listings.
- Property auctions – Can find fixer-uppers at lower prices but usually require quick turnaround.
- New build developments – Visit developers’ websites directly to find the newest housing stock.
Using multiple platforms maximises the properties you can discover.
Book Viewings For Potential Properties
Once you find promising options, book viewings promptly as competition can be fierce. Ask the agent:
- How long has the property been on the market?
- How many viewings have taken place?
- Has an offer been made or accepted?
This gives insight into the property’s desirability. Attend viewings prepared with a checklist of points to assess. Take photos to compare later and a tape measure if required. Ask questions about aspects not obvious from the listing. Pay attention to your gut reaction – does it feel like home?
Make An Offer
Found your dream home? Don’t delay making an offer or you risk losing out. Consider the following:
- Recent sale prices – Of comparable local properties. Gives you a benchmark for what’s fair.
- Length of time listed – The longer on the market, potentially more room to negotiate.
- Property condition – Offer lower if extensive work is required.
- Conveyancing solicitors – Appoint early so they’re ready to act swiftly.
Negotiation is expected – make an offer you’re happy with even if slightly under asking price. You can always increase it if needed.
Secure Your Property With Deposit And Sign Contracts
Offer accepted? Congratulations! To complete purchase:
- Arrange survey to uncover any issues requiring negotiation.
- Finalise mortgage offer paperwork.
- Transfer deposit monies to solicitor to be held in escrow until completion.
- Sign contracts committing you to purchase.
- Instruct solicitor to set completion date – when you receive keys and officially own the property!
Tips For An Effective Property Search
- Register for email alerts so you get notifications of new suitable listings in real time.
- Be ready to act quickly organizing viewings and making offers – new properties get snapped up fast.
- Consider increasing your budget if needed – an extra £25,000 could make the difference in securing your dream home.
- Don’t let minor cosmetic issues put you off a good value property you could transform.
- Compromise on wants that aren’t essential if it means affording the right location.
- For auctions, do due diligence arranging surveys, finance etc beforehand.
- View at different times – weekdays, weekends, evenings – to assess traffic noise and ambiance.
Securing property in the UK is highly competitive – but staying prepared, focused and vigilant will help you achieve your goal of finding your ideal home.
What paperwork do I need for property viewings?
Bring proof of your identity, finances, mortgage Agreement in Principle, contact details and a list of questions. Keep copies in your car so you’re always ready.
How many properties should I view?
There’s no magic number, but aim to view at least 3-5 options meeting your top priorities before deciding.
Should I make an offer on a property I’ve not viewed?
Only if absolutely impossible to view, for example if living abroad. Not recommended otherwise – make informed decisions based on thorough viewings.
What percentage below asking price should I offer?
As a guideline, 5-10% below is reasonable depending on factors like demand and required upgrades. Research sold prices of comparable properties for an accurate figure.
When do I need to appoint a solicitor by?
It’s recommended to appoint conveyancing solicitors before making offers. This allows them to act quickly on your behalf if an offer is accepted.CopyRetry