The property ladder is not the easiest to navigate, especially when it’s your first time. For most people, it is the biggest purchase they will ever make, which means they want to be sure they do it right. If you’re sitting at home, perhaps in your family home, and dreaming of your own house or apartment, ever increasing property prices and high deposits are going to leave you feeling very depressed. If you’ve been living in rented accommodation for several years already, the chances of saving for a hefty deposit may seem even more remote. Don’t give up on your dream home too soon because there is help available. You just need to know where to look.
1. Look for Properties in the Right Place
There are still countless estate agents’ windows you can look in on your local high street. However, you now have the option of looking for properties online. One thing to remember when visiting property search websites is that the prices shown are what the seller would like to receive, not what they’ll actually get. Pick any one of the top sites, for example, Rightmove, Zoopla, www.global-guardians.co.uk, or OnTheMarket, and you’ll find a wealth of useful information. As well as properties up for sale, you’ll also be able to search for historic listings, match sold prices with old property ads, and compare prices with other areas in a particular location.
2. Check Out the Neighbourhood Before Making an Offer
The popular Channel 4 property programme, Location, Location, Location has hit the nail on the head. It doesn’t matter what your dream apartment looks like on the inside, if the location isn’t right, your dreams will quickly fade. Before you put in an offer, you need to spend adequate time looking around the area. Choose different times to visit and walk around looking for clues as to the suitability of the neighbourhood. Visit local parks and pubs, both at lunchtime and in the evenings. What are the local shops and restaurants offering? Visit the specific location of the property you’re interested in, but again, at different times of the day. Is it noisy at night times because there’s a factory just around the corner? Are there planes flying over all times of the night and day? What are the development plans for the area? It’s possible to find out whether there is a shopping complex in the pipeline by visiting the Government’s Planning Portal, for example.
3. Financing Your Dream Home
Unless you magically win the lottery, you’re going to be shopping around for a mortgage. You want to get the best deal you possibly can, as this is going to be a massive financial commitment. To improve your chances of getting your application approved, there are several things you can do.
Before applying for a mortgage, you need first to sit down and do your sums. You need to work out your budget in order to be confident you can borrow enough money for the purchase of a property. You also need to be sure there will be enough spare to cover additional expenses and fees.
Before filling out your application, ensure you receive and assess your credit report. Credit reports are held by credit reference agencies, which include Equifax, TransUnion, & Experian – Why 3 Different Credit Bureaus?; you’ll find the answer online. A mortgage lender is going to request one when they receive your application, so it’ll be helpful to know what they can see. The better your credit rating, the more likely you are to have your mortgage approved.
The last thing a mortgage provider is going to want to see is a long list of debtors. Ideally, you need to try to reduce the number of debts you have before your application. Not only will doing so improve your chances of the mortgage being approved, but it could also increase the amount you’ll be able to borrow.
If there’s no chance of you saving enough for a deposit, there is the option of buying with someone else. It could improve your chances of getting a good deal on a mortgage. However, remember that a mortgage is a big commitment, so you need to be confident it’s the right move to make.
There are numerous schemes you can take advantage of when you’re buying your first home. It is possible to borrow 20% of the purchase price from the government. For a property in London, you can borrow up to 40%.
Purchasing and owning your perfect home is a dream for many people. Thankfully, it is still an option, and there are plenty of properties to choose from all over the country.