To highlight National Home Buying Week, developers Joseph Homes builders of Balham and Mill Hill share their top tips for first time buyers looking to get onto the property ladder ..
Joseph Homes Top 5 Tips for First Time Buyers
- SAVE: Save, save, save! Even if you’re supported by Government-initiatives you will be in a better position if you have saved as much deposit as possible.
- SPEAK: Speak to a mortgage advisor, they’ll be able to compare deals and clearly explain what type of mortgage suits you and your circumstances e.g. repayment or interest only.
- SCORE: Do what you can to improve your credit score. Audit your current debts and make sure you’re paying off credit cards consistently.
- SCHEME: Find out more about the Government’s Help to Buy scheme. You’ll only have to pay a 5% deposit and the Government will loan you up to 40% of the property’s value up to £600,000 to reduce the size of mortgage you’ll need.
- SEARCH: If you’re looking into a new area which you’re not familiar with, make sure you research your commute, travel times around town and what amenities are important for you to have on your doorstep
Tips to minimise stress when buying your first new build home
- Speak to a financial advisor and work out your budget so you’re clear what you can afford. Don’t forget to budget for legal fees, potential surveys as well as stamp duty
- Arrange a mortgage in principle before you start booking appointments – it will be valid for around six months and will give you an edge over other buyers if you end up offering on a popular property
- Choose a recommended conveyancing solicitor, you’ll be talking to them a lot during the process so make sure you choose someone recommended who will keep the process as efficient as possible
- Make yourself available and open to communication, you’ll speed up the process by speaking to and getting back to your solicitors and estate agents promptly
- If you’re moving from a rental property and your tenancy is coming to an end, speak to your letting agent or landlord to see if you can agree to a rolling monthly contract. This will come in handy if your purchase is delayed and take the stress out of worrying about moving out when you’re yet to complete on your new property.
Why buy a new build home?
- Structural Warranty. New build properties come with a 10 year warranty, which protects you against structural defects for the first decade of living in your new home.
- Safety and Security. New builds have a higher level of safety than older properties, because they have to adhere to the latest safety legislation at time of construction.
- Energy Efficiency. Thanks to smart energy systems and superior insulating materials, you could save over £600 per year on your energy bills in a new home. Over 80% of new builds have an A or B energy efficiency rating, compared to a mere 2.2% of older houses. New homes also have a smaller carbon footprint, as well as better air filtration.
- Design Choices. New build developments allow you much more design choice than older homes, with the added bonus of being completely new and never occupied.
- No Chain. The buying process for a new home is easier than for an older home, which may be part of a complex property chain. This means you don’t have the stress of waiting for other people to sell their home, and lets you plan your time scale.
- Incentives. There are often additional incentives and deals available when purchasing a new home. For example, the government’s Help To Buy Equity Loan scheme, which provides an equity loan of up to 20% of the property’s value (up to 40% in London) and only requires a 5% deposit, is exclusively available on new build houses.