Buying a house can be a very stressful time – whether you’re a first time buyer or a seasoned property purchaser. With so many things to consider, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and for important details to be overlooked.

Director of Northern Ireland-based Mayers Real Estate, Chartered Surveyor, Ursula Mayers, said:
“Purchasing a home is one of the biggest, and likely most expensive, decisions you’ll ever make. So, getting advice from an expert can be a great source of comfort, and can help to alleviate stress, as you can rest assured that a professional will look after everything for you.”

While enlisting an experienced professional is important, there are plenty of things you can do to make the house-buying process more straight-forward and stress-free, starting with these eight things to remember when buying a house:

1. What’s Your Dealbreaker?
It’s far too easy for emotions to become involved when house-hunting, and you could find yourself irrationally falling in love with a property that doesn’t actually meet your needs. Before looking at properties, make a list of must-haves and dealbreakers. Do you need a lot of storage space? Do you want large gardens or smaller and easier-to-maintain gardens? Do you need room to park multiple vehicles? Whatever your must-haves and dealbreakers are, get them on paper now before you start browsing for properties.

2. Location, Location, Location
Location is an important consideration when buying property – do you need to be near commuter routes? Would you prefer to live closer to quality schools? Do you want a family home away from the hustle and bustle of the city? When thinking of location, it’s important to consider the property’s surroundings – is the area prone to flooding? Is the house situated on a steep hill that could be problematic in winter? Consider all eventualities so you are going into the purchase with your eyes open.

3. Start At The Top
The structure and condition of the roof of a property should be taken into consideration, as it can be expensive to replace and repair, and can cause serious problems if there are any leaks, missing tiles, or mold spots. It’s also worth checking out the seepage system – including downspouts, gutters and drainage pipes.

4. Think Temperature
Older properties are generally less energy efficient than more modern homes, unless things like the heating system, double glazing, and insulation have been upgraded. Homes can be expensive to heat, especially in cold winter months, so it’s best to check what kind of heating system is in the house, when it was last upgraded, and when it was last inspected.

5. Ignore the Décor
When it comes to buying property, try not to get carried away by the décor – whether you love it, or hate it. It’s more important to focus on the structural condition of the property, the location, and the condition of items such as the plumbing, electrics, foundations, and window frames. These factors are far more significant, and expensive, to deal with. Décor can always be changed.

6. Follow Your Nose
Smells within a home can be important – sewage, gas, mold, and damp all have distinctive smells, and all usually indicate a problem that can be costly to deal with. Other smells such as pet odours and cigarettes may not be as problematic, but can still take time and resources to get rid of.

7. Go Explore
Turn on all the taps, open cupboard doors and drawers, check that windows and doors open and shut freely, try all the light switches, count the sockets, flush toilets – where possible, check that everything works by trying it yourself.

8. Visit Often
To get a true understanding of what the area is like, you need to visit the property multiple times – on different days of the week, and at different times of the day. Is there terrible congestion during peak travel hours? Are there noisy neighbours that play loud music at night? Does the area have a nice atmosphere in general?

To discuss listing your home with Mayers Real Estate call Ursula on 028 90 388 383 or email ursula@mayersrealestate.co.uk.

Mayers Real Estate Northern Ireland

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