The Steps to Take When Buying Your First Home

The average house price in the UK peaked at a record high of £277,000 in February 2022, with this £27,000 higher than the same time last year.

This growth trend was even more pronounced in England, where average property prices soared by a whopping 10.7% to £296,000 during the reporting period,

This creates a significant challenge for both existing and first-time buyers nationwide. But what proactive steps can you take to overcome such issues?

  1. Choose the Right Home for You

One of the first steps is to identify the right type of property, based on your budget, unique expectations and future family plans.

For example, terraced houses are often considerably smaller and cheaper than semi-detached alternatives, while you may also pay a premium for new-build developments that are energy-efficient and equipped with all mod-cons.

The surrounding area is another key consideration, as you may have variable requirements with regards to schools, amenities and public transport links.

In these instances, you could get started by searching for new houses for sale near me, while this also helps you to gain an insight into the average price in target areas.

couple celebrate First Home

  1. Understand Your Budgetary Requirements

When buying your home, it’s imperative that you have a clearly defined budget, based on your deposit amount and the value of the mortgage that you’re able to acquire from a lender. You can use a mortgage calculator tool to help understand how interest repayments will be.

Your budget will also need to make allowances for stamp duty along with broker and surveyor fees, while estate agents will also charge a commission fee of between 1% and 3.5% on every purchase.

By developing an accurate and viable budget, you can target potential properties by price and location. As a general rule, we’d recommend being conservative when trying to remain within this budget, as this will minimise your mortgage repayments over time.

  1. What About Your Existing Policy?

If you are an existing homeowner, you may have to decide whether to sell your current home before buying a new one.

The main advantage of this is that it removes from a so-called “chain”, in which you’re dependent on the sale of your home before funding the purchase of a new property.

However, if you sell before buying, you’ll have to find alternative, short-term accommodation without overly compromising your budget. There’s also a risk that the purchase could collapse, leaving you without a permanent home indefinitely.

So, you’ll need to make an informed and balanced decision, based on your unique circumstances and whether or not you’re in an existing chain.