It matters not if you are a property-purchasing novice making your first moves on the property ladder, or you’ve been through the process a number of times and know how things work, the same principles apply when it comes to buying a house. Essentially, there is one rule to stand by, and that is that you need to achieve the right balance between the four main factors: affordability, availability, suitability, and pricing.
There’s always going to be a handy gauge between houses through price comparison with other homes. However, we would advise that you take a look into the information available on numerous websites that can also be a source of help. The Land Registry has fully detailed information on completion prices. You can also see get an idea of whether prices are rising or falling in the local area.
Commonly, traditional mortgage lending principles gave licence to applicant borrowing up to three times their gross annual income. In terms of couples, they could normally borrow three times the larger salary, plus one times the smaller salary. Alternatively, they could borrow two-and-a-half times their salary combined. You may have the access to be able to borrow more than this guideline, but is there really any point in acquiring your dream home if it's going to end up causing financial frailties in the future?
Essentially, your repayments on the mortgage shouldn’t exceed 35%-40% of your net monthly income.
Once you’ve deciphered what you can afford, and you’ve taken into account any costs for improving the property, you need to discover whether the kind of house you desire is obtainable in the area that you’d like it to be. Don’t be afraid to show a little compromise in some areas of your likes and dislikes as this will allow you to find a nice home as a result of showing some flexibility.
Finally, you get to the point when you’ve found the place you’d like live and you can afford it. Here are 4 points to weigh up before you make your move:
If applicable to you, is the local school one you are keen to enrol your children in? If so, is the house you’ve found located within the school’s catchment area? This is something you can find out with a quick call to the school itself. Alternatively, if you choose an estate agent like Howes Estates with local knowledge when you’re looking for homes for sale in Devon, they will often have this information to hand for you.
Think ahead. It might seem a while away, but if you are planning to have a family and you don’t want to necessarily move, then you’ll want to buy a home you want to live in for a while without having to move again.
Are you happily within distance of friends and family, and is the home in a convenient location for getting to work?
Aside from being able to park, which is almost a must for most people, what other facilities are to hand? When you buy a house you will more than likely want to consider whether there is handy access to shops, local parks, and restaurants for pleasant evenings out?