Before embarking on a hectic schedule of viewings make sure to sit down with a financial expert to fully understand what is expected of you when applying for a mortgage. It is important to be clear from the outset about how much you can afford to borrow and what you can expect to comfortably repay each month. Once you have filled out all the forms and met with your bank’s criteria they will issue you with “Approval in Principal” this means you are now ready to decide on where you want to live.
Location, Location, Location. When thinking about where you want to live think about your life and the things that are important to you. How long do you want to travel to work? Where are your family & friends based? Is a community or park or road network important in your life. What is going to be important in your life in the next 5-10 years? These are all important questions when choosing where to live, things that are not relevant right now might be important in the future so it is important to look ahead and try and choose wisely.
Viewing houses can be quite exciting especially when the property appears to tick all the right boxes. Always view with an open mind and think of a few points that you simply won’t compromise on, you will never find the perfect house so don’t even try to! Try to arrive on time to your viewing so that you are not rushed and can fully appreciate all that the house has to offer. Don’t be afraid to ask the agent plenty of questions including what the vendor’s position is, what their expectations are and if there are any offers. If you are interested, say so, it is important that the agent is aware of this so that the house is not sold without your knowledge, you will kick yourself afterwards!
When you are happy that you have found the right property that ticks most of your boxes let the agent know that you are now ready and in a position to make an offer. The agent should be able to guide you on what level to start at but remember, the agent’s job is to act for their client and not you so don’t be afraid to test the waters at a level you feel comfortable at. You might be asked to prove that you are loan approved so make sure to have copies available. Ask plenty of questions if there are other bidders involved – are they loan approved? Do they need to sell? Then sit back and wait for the good news.
If you have been successful with your bid you will need to provide the agent with your solicitors details. You will also need to organise a mortgage valuer through your bank and find a structural surveyor to have a thorough look over the property. You will also need to pay a deposit to the seller’s agent to secure the property while contracts are being drafted. Once the mortgage valuation has been carried out and your surveyor has had an opportunity to provide a detailed report you should speak to your solicitor about signing contracts, this will lead you one step closer to getting those shiny keys.