Buying a home is probably one of the biggest tasks you’ll ever have to do it your life It involves a heck of a lot of planning, organisation and time. If you are a first-time buyer, the stress can mount up very quickly because you are faced with a lot of unexpected costs such as stamp duty and solicitor’s fees. If you are looking to upgrade your family home next year, you will probably already have a lot of ideas on what you need out of a home and the features to look for.
When you come to viewing houses, it can be a huge process of elimination. Finding a home which is in the right location, the right type of property, and the features inside. It can be a long process to find that place which ticks all the boxes, and you may need help to figure out what to look for when you do go to view your potential future home. That’s why we’ve compiled a helpful list of tips and things to look out for when you go to view a property.
What Are Your Looking For In A Home?
The first question you must ask yourself when you are looking to purchase a new home is the type of property you want. It will depend highly on the type of lifestyle you lead, how many of you are in the home, and how much stuff you own. If you are currently thinking of raising a family, or you already gave children, then a house is the best place to be because you will have the extra space for storage as well as some outdoor space.
However, if you are living alone or with your partner, you may want to go down the route of a flat or Condominium. If you work in the city, you can rent a small place close to the city centre which will make travelling to work every day much less stressful.
You need to really think about all of your options before you commit to a property type- but what you can also do is book viewings with a few different types of property if you are unsure, and then you will be able to walk around a decide whether you’d be able to make a home in that place.
Once it comes to viewing a property, there are plenty of things you need to bear in mind. Here are a list of things you need to consider.
1. Is there damp?
One of the main issues you want to avoid when you move into a new home is a damp issue. When water finds its way into your home, it causes damp to form which encourages mould to form in your home. It can damage the structural integrity of your home after a while and cause you a lot of money to repair it. As you walk around the home, make sure to check underneath the windows and see if there is any sign that damp has been painted over.
2. Is the building structurally sound?
As you walk through the home and outside into the garden, be sure to check the roof for any signs of cracks and missing tiles. You will also want to check the home for subsidence- you’ll notice this if one of the rooms slopes down as you walk through it. An issue like this can cost a lot of money to fix so you need to watch out for that. Inside the home check for creaking floorboards, cracks in the walls and ceiling or any other issues.
3. Is there enough storage space?
One of the major things you will need to think of is the storage space you have in the home. If you have a lot of belongs or a family, you will need to make sure there are plenty of places you can store all of your things.
4. Facing which way?
If you are someone who values time in the garden all year round, you may want to make sure that the garden is south-facing. The reason for this is that it means the sun will be shining into the garden all day long. You will usually be able to find this out easily by asking the previous owner or estate agent. This way you can be sure that the home will always be full of light at the back too. However, if you are more of an indoor person, you might not mind which way the garden faces.
5. Do The Rooms have Potential?
Try to imagine what the rooms will look like without all of the furniture in there. What you see as you walk into a home is not what it will look like once you’ve moved in, so try to dissociate yourself from what’s in each room and focus on the layout and space of the home. Think about what furniture you have currently and whether you’ll be able to fit it comfortably into the space.
6. Don’t Let Interior Design Fool You
As above, don’t let the way they present their home to you distract you from the wider issues the building has. It can be all too easy to fall in love with the wallpaper or décor, but you need to keep viewing the home as a blank canvas.
7. Check The Windows- are they well-kept?
As you approach the outside of the home, you will notice the window frames. Do they look well-kept and in good condition? Are there any cracks or gaps? Is the double-glazing intact? These are all questions you must ask yourself before even entering the property because the way the windows are kept can be a good signal as to how they maintain and care for the rest of the home.
8. Is The Roof Solid?
Roofing is one of the most expensive things you can end up forking out for during your time living at a home. It is crucial to make sure that the roof of the home you look to purchase is secure, the shingles are all accounted for and there is no damp getting into the roof.
9. Check The Wiring
As you look around the home, make sure that you try and count how many plug sockets there are and what condition they are in. Faulty wiring can be incredibly costly and dangerous, so you need to really pay attention to the way it’s been done and whether it is safe to use.
10. Check The Plumbing
Just as you do with the electrics, make sure that as you view the home you check the state of the plumbing. Take the time to run the taps and see what the water pressure is like. Ask to see the boiler and check what condition it is in. And if they have the hot water in the roof, it will most likely be very old and need replacing.
11. Check how sound-proof the home is
The last thing you want when you move into a terraced or semi-detached home is to be able to hear everything your neighbours say and do. Try and listen carefully to see if the walls feel shallow.
12. Is There A Loft?
It is easy to forget when you view a home that it might have a loft area- because often this is not put on the advert for the home. When you go to view the home, ask to see the loft. You will be able to take a look and see how structurally sound it is, as well as work out whether or not you need to board the loft out before using it for storage.
13. The Area
If you are looking to move to a home in your local area, you won’t have to worry too much about the neighbourhood you are moving to. However, if you plan on moving further afield, you may want to find out some more about the location. Find out where the transport links are and what options you have, see how many schools there are in the area and if they are rated well. Look at the crime rate to make sure you are raising your kids in a safe area. All of these things will be incredibly important and may dictate the home you buy in the end.
The final thing you must ask yourself is whether or not you could call this place home? Could you imagine yourself waking up in this property every morning and going into the kitchen for breakfast? Would it feel natural to come home at the end of the day and soak in the bath, before cuddling up on the sofa with the family? And would you be able to imagine raising your family and spending the most important days of your life in this place? These are perhaps the most important questions to ask yourself when it comes to viewing and purchasing your new home.