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Five Things to Consider When Buying a New Home

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After months of mulling over the idea of moving, you’ve finally made up your mind to take the plunge.   Now it’s time to launch a search to discover your new home. But before you jump straight into making an offer on a house that catches your eye there are some things you should consider.

1) How close is everything?

You may have found your dream home but where in the world is it? Have you considered things like the distance to work, or to the shops? Maybe you are relying on public transport or are thinking about learning to drive? Think about the distances you may need to travel from home to work or to local doctors’ surgeries etc and plan ahead – whether that is preparing for a test or arranging for a season ticket – to enable a smooth transition to your new home.

2) How much will it cost?

It is important to know what types of mortgages are available and what type of mortgage you can get before you set your heart on a property. You’ll need to consider whether you want a repayment mortgage or an interest-only mortgage for example. Remember that a repayment mortgage, while it costs more each month, does actually pay off the original debt whereas an interest-only mortgage won’t chip away at the total debt. Next, you’ll need to consider whether you want a fixed or variable rate mortgage. The most important principle of a fixed rate is that you know exactly what your mortgage repayments will be for that time. To get a better idea of how much of a mortgage you could be offered try out a mortgage calculator to see how much those repayments will cost.

3) How will I meet new people?

We all have that moment of doubt when we think “how am I going to get involved in the local community and make new friends?” – especially when you are moving out of an area. There are lots of ways to get involved in local sports and hobby groups. Have a search on the internet or pick up a local paper to see what’s going on in the area. Don’t be afraid to put a little effort in to fit in.

4) How good are the local schools?

If you are moving home with a family then you will need to consider the quality of schools in that area. You will probably not still remain in the same catchment area for your children’s current schools so you’ll need to either be able to arrange transport for them or look for an alternative closer to your new home. When looking at potential schools always arrange a visit to the schools and try to take your children as well if possible so they can get a feel for a new school at the same time.

5) Is everything as it seems?

When viewing your potential new home, take time to check for any ‘hidden extras.’ Have a look at the walls – are there any signs of damp problems such as wet spots, signs of mould, peeling wallpaper or condensation on the windows? Check for ceiling cracks; is the plumbing, boiler and electricity all in working order? Fixing some of these issues could end up costing you a fortune. Save yourself time and money by spotting them before you make a decision.

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