Buying a new house is an incredibly exciting prospect, but there are risks involved. If you’ve found a property you love, it’s essential to be wary of potential pitfalls. Here are some common mistakes to avoid.
Buying after the first viewing
Viewing a house can give you an idea of the feel of the home and an opportunity to have a good look around, but it’s natural to have questions after the first viewing. Even if you think the house is perfect, and you’ve fallen head over heels in love, it’s wise to schedule another visit. Let your head take over during the second viewing. Take the chance to inspect every room closely and think about how the house will suit your lifestyle and requirements. If you buy after the first viewing, there is a risk of missing important details or defects, and you might also be acting on emotion.
Buying without doing a survey
One of the riskiest steps you can take is to buy without a survey. When you view a house or an apartment, it’s very easy to focus on the aesthetics and the feel of the property. Surveys are designed to get into the nitty-gritty and flag issues that you may have missed or problems that are not visible to an untrained eye. From damp and issues with the roof to invasive or noxious weeds such as Curly Dock, inspections and surveys can provide crucial information before you sign contracts. If your survey identifies defects or underlying issues that could be costly to fix, you can try to renegotiate an offer or walk away if you don’t want the hassle or expense of taking on a project.
Paying too much
Real estate agents are paid to negotiate and get the best price for their clients. As a buyer, it is essential to undertake research and to consider your offer carefully. Property valuations may be inflated to try and attract sellers to an agency and make buyers feel that the home is worth more than they may think. If the price seems high compared to other properties in the area, or the market is slow, think about putting in an offer below the asking price. You can always start with a lower price and increase it if it is rejected. If you go in too high, you run the risk of paying more than the house is worth. There are several factors that influence property valuations, including the location, the condition of the house, market movements and the demand for properties in the area. If the demand is low and the market is flat, there could be room for negotiation.
For most of us, buying a house is the most significant investment we will make in our lifetime. It’s important to make the right decision. If you’ve found a home you love, arrange another viewing, research prices in the local area and hire experienced surveyors. Take your time to consider whether the property is right for you and be prepared to negotiate, particularly if the survey flags issues or the house has been on the market for a long time.