House hunting can be fun, but it’s also the lead up to one of the biggest financial commitments you can make – so there’s a lot at stake.
Before you start booking in viewings, here are some tips to help you build a better KJ shortlist.
1. Get a Mortgage in Principle
Luckily, you’ve already got this covered. Your Mortgage in Principle gives you a solid idea of what a bank or building society is prepared to lend you (in principle).
This means you can narrow down your search to properties in your price range and see how homes in that range stack up against one another.
2. Speak to an estate agent
Even if you’re doing everything online via Rightmove and the like, it’s still worth speaking to an estate agent in your area because they might get wind of a property that’s a good fit for you before it’s listed online.
Remember: it’s in their interest to find you an ideal property, so why not tell them what you’re looking for and let them do some of the legwork?
3. Don’t just consider the house
The property itself might be perfect, but how are the local amenities? What are the transport links like? Is there somewhere you can nip to for a pint of milk (or beer)?
It might not be something on your radar just yet, but how are the local schools and maternity wards? Is there somewhere local to walk your dog, or future dogs?
4. Look at risk factors
A property search website won’t necessarily give you information about crime rates or flood risk, so it’s worth investigating for yourself.
Crime rates Flood risk: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
5. Check out the parking situation
If there are drivers in your household then you’ll need somewhere with enough space to park your cars. Some neighbours will consider the road near their property as ‘their’ space, and you don’t want to get into a turf war over parking.