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Information » Housing » Buying a New Home » Finding a Property

Finding a Property

Before you start looking for your new home, there are several things that you should consider. For example:

  • Roughly how much can you afford?
  • This is usually up to three times the amount you earn or if there are two of you then it is usually two and half times your combined salaries. Some lenders will offer you more, but beware of high interest rates and fixed terms that you can't get out of
  • It can be tempting to buy somewhere that costs up to the maximum of what you can get a mortgage for but consider how this will affect you long term. Higher mortgages can mean higher monthly payments leaving you less money should anything go wrong or change in your circumstances

Where do you want to live?

  • For instance, do you want to be close to family, work or friends? These can factor in choosing the location of your new home. You may have to be realistic about this. As a first time buyer, for example, it might not be possible to buy in the most sought after areas, such as city centres and popular suburbs, as prices tend to be higher in these locations

What sort of home would you like?

  • Do you want a flat or a house and do you want a garden or a garage? These are all decisions that you will have to consider before you start looking for your new home
  • There are several ways to find a property to buy including the property section in your local newspaper, estate agents and contacting new home builders to find out what developments they have in your area
  • If you are moving to a new area, it is worth doing some research before you start your property search. Try walking around the area and get a feel for the local amenities such as shops and schools. It is also worth checking the windows of local estate agents to make sure you can afford to buy in the area

The legal process

  • It may be a good idea to find a solicitor before you start looking for a property. This will save you rushing once you have found a house you want to buy. Ask friends and family for recommendations on which solicitors to use. It is important that you are able to trust this person
  • Solicitors deal with the process of conveyance. This is the legal and administrative work involved in transferring the ownership of land when you buy a property. Your solicitors work will begin once your offer on a property has been accepted and they will charge you for the work, so get an idea of the cost before going ahead with anything

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