What should you look out for when buying a new home? Buying a new home is one of the largest purchases you will likely undertake in your life. So, it’s important to make sure you give yourself the very best shot of getting it right. Finding the perfect new home can be made easier by trying to spot anything that could potentially cause problems before you get the keys. This way, you’ll be able to identify ways to rectify potential issues before they arise and still be able to make an offer on your dream property.
We’ve put together our top tips of things to look out for when buying a new home. This way you can be fully prepared and informed before making an offer.
An easy way to check out the neighbourhood is to drive around it! Speak to locals and pop into shops to get a feel for the area. If the facilities don’t match your requirements, it might not be worth continuing to view the inside of the property. This applies to rental as well as sales properties.
Look at the exterior of the property; the roof, guttering, brickwork / render etc. This will give you a good idea of the overall condition. It will also indicate whether or not money has been spent on the upkeep of expensive things like the roof. Internally, look out for large cracks especially on extensions and bay windows.
As you walk around the house, try and sniff out any mould or damp smells. If there is an overpowering scent of bleach or air freshener in the air, the seller may trying to be mask something.
If there is a boiler in the property, see how old it looks and ask if it has been serviced regularly. A broken boiler could set you back in excess of £2k.
Asbestos is actually pretty common in garages, lean to roofs and in water tanks. If this is present it may cause issues with conveyancing and can be expensive to dispose of.
Take the opportunity to have a nose in next doors garden through the upstairs windows. Not everyone is going to have a Chelsea Flower Show winning plot, but the state of the garden often tells you a lot about the type of people you will potentially be living next to.
Check out the fuse board and the general look of the electrics. If re-wiring is needed this can be an expensive job and messy if channelling into walls is needed. Then again, it’s the perfect excuse to redecorate!
Can you hear the neighbours every word through the walls? How good is the sound proofing?
If you’re buying a property that is not brand new, the chances are that you will naturally come across various cosmetic or minor general wear and tear issues to deal with. This is a standard part of purchasing a new home. However, being aware of anything that might need addressing upfront will help you budget accordingly. It might also help when it comes to making the asking price, and will certainly impact on the associated surveys.