We know how daunting it can be to purchase your first property, it is one of the biggest first steps you will make in your lifetime. The amount of information and things needed to be done can be quite overwhelming, and that is why we are here to help.
First of all, what is a first-time buyer?
A first-time buyer is someone who has never purchased a property before or has been registered on any title deeds. Even if you have inherited a property and not technically purchased one, you would not be classed as a first-time buyer. Being a first-time buyer can be seen as an advantage for potential vendors as you would be classed as a ‘no chain’ purchaser.
Here are our 5 Top Tips for purchasing your first property.
Take Your Time
It is so easy to feel rushed into putting an offer in due to the pressures that come with buying a house. You should always take your time and not get carried away with the first property you like the look of.
You should view multiple properties and weigh up the pros and cons of the different ones. It could be a good idea to make a checklist of points that you can tick off whilst viewing, including things such as driveway, garden size, and noise pollution. This will make it easier when it comes to deciding which property is the best for you.
Don’t Feel Pressured
When you put an offer in for a property, you may be pointed in the direction of certain third parties if they have a working relationship with your mortgage broker or estate agent. You may feel pressured to put an offer in out of fear of not getting the property when you might not feel quite ready.
We would recommend taking your time with all important decisions. When instructing solicitors, it is a good idea to have a browse and obtain quotes from different sources before making any decisions, do not feel pressured into deciding straight your way, and take your time to make a decision that works best for you.
Getting an Understanding of the Conveyancing Process
You will never be expected to understand the legal processes and the ins and outs of the legal process of buying a house – after all, this is what we are here for! However, it is useful to understand the basics of the process.
The seller’s solicitors will provide your solicitors with something called a contract pack. This contains the title documents to the property and other documents such as the fittings and contents form. Your solicitor will review these documents and raise enquiries with the other side as necessary.
Searches will be submitted and reviewed upon receipt, and you will also receive a report on the mortgage offer. When the enquiries are all satisfied, and more importantly, you are happy to proceed, you will be sent the contract for signature and a date will be agreed upon for completion.
Some transactions can be much simpler than others, and some can unfortunately take substantially longer – every property is different! It is important that your solicitor keeps you updated with the progress of your file and manages your expectations.
Get a Survey
We would always recommend having a survey carried out on a property you are purchasing. As your solicitors, there is only so much we know about the property from the legal documents we are provided with. We never visit the property, so if we are not made aware of certain things or potential problems, we cannot fix them before completion.
It is always better to find problems with the property before completion takes place, as the seller can potentially fix any issues or even the purchase price can be negotiated. If the problems are only found once completion has happened, it is very difficult to get any compensation for any work needed to be carried out.
Your solicitors are there to guide you through the process of buying a house. We understand that purchasing your first home can be a scary and intimidating process, so never feel as though you cannot ask questions. There is no such thing as a silly question – we are here to help you.
If you are thinking of purchasing your first home and want to discuss this with one of the Conveyancing Team members, please get in touch and we will be happy to assist.Get our latest news to your inbox