Always know what you want – and don’t want.
Write a checklist of what you expect from your first home and bring it with you every time you view a property.
Some of the things you should ask yourself when doing your list are:
– House or apartment? New or secondhand?
– Do you want to live close to your work, family, friends?
– How important is parking? – and what about shops, restaurants, leisure facilities?
– List 10 important features in order and decide which one you could live without e.g. garage, south facing garden, number of bedrooms, etc.
Plan your trips:
– Make the most of your time by viewing properties close to each other.
– If you’re seeing a lot of places, it’s easy to get confused – so take notes, measurements and pictures/video to help you with your decisions later.
– Confirm the appointment and get the name and phone number of the person showing you the property.
– When viewing houses, take a walk around the exterior and watch out for things…like missing roof slates and cracks in walls.
– Take a look at the area, is it well maintained? what’s the traffic like? drive or walk around and check out the parking, shops, parks, pubs, restaurants etc.
– Ask lots of questions and remember to take your time, find out whats included in the sale
– View the property at different times of the day to see the level of natural light, don’t be put off by dodgy decor. A lick of paint and some imagination can make all the difference.
– Remember, empty rooms appear bigger than they are, so try to imagine them with your style of furniture.
Most of all, as mentioned beforehand don’t be afraid to ask plenty of questions & best of luck house hunting!
By Caterina Nolan
20th May 2010.