Five top tips when buying a new home
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