Five top tips when buy­ing a new home

Macclesfield Express - - SPORT -

IF you’ve started the new year with a new goal to own your own home, you may feel some­what over­whelmed by the process.

There are how­ever, a few sim­ple rules to fol­low which will stand you in good stead.

Christo­pher John­son, lead mort­gage prod­uct man­ager at Prin­ci­pal­ity Build­ing So­ci­ety, has picked his top five.

Christo­pher said: “Rule num­ber one, how much you should bor­row.

“Plan your fi­nances re­ally care­fully so that you can af­ford your mort­gage now and in the fu­ture.

“Don’t for­get about stamp duty and other small costs along the way when you are cal­cu­lat­ing how much you are go­ing to re­pay all in all.

“An­other thing to bear in mind is the im­por­tance of in­ter­est rates and to make sure you get the best deal for you.

“Make sure that if in­ter­est rates rise in the fu­ture you’re equipped to deal with them, it’s not just about what you can af­ford now but also what you can af­ford in the fu­ture.”

“Se­condly,” said Christo­pher. “Find a so­lic­i­tor.

“This doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily need to be done be­fore you put an of­fer in on a house, but will cer­tainly speed up the process once your of­fer has been ac­cepted.

“Choos­ing a so­lic­i­tor may seem like a dif­fi­cult de­ci­sion but try to look for one that is on a panel of ma­jor lenders or speak to your fam­ily and friends to find out who they use.

“Next, take the time to find your dream home, and make an of­fer when you find it.

“Cre­ate a check­list of re­quire­ments on the house early to make sure it ticks all the boxes, in­clud­ing pos­si­ble house re­pairs, how old the prop­erty is, lo­cal ameni­ties and if you like the neigh­bour­hood.

“If it’s the house for you, put a sen­si­ble of­fer in that doesn’t over­stretch you, tak­ing into ac­count all the fees that will fol­low.”

Christo­pher con­tin­ued: “Make sure you find the right mort­gage pay­ment plan as the range of mort­gage prod­ucts on the mar­ket changes all the time.

“Ap­proach dif­fer­ent lenders to re­search the right prod­uct and take the time to go through all the small print – re­mem­ber this is the big­gest fi­nan­cial de­ci­sion you’ll prob­a­bly ever make, so don’t rush it.

“Fi­nally, make sure you get any nec­es­sary sur­veys on the house to check things such as drainage, build­ing and land is­sues.

“Once com­plete, get your build­ing in­sur­ance im­me­di­ately; once you’ve ex­changed con­tracts you’re legally bound to buy the house so in­sur­ance is a must.

“Fi­nally, set­tle on a com­ple­tion date, and the house is yours.”

●● Christo­pher John­son, lead mort­gage prod­uct man­ager at Prin­ci­pal­ity Build­ing So­ci­ety

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