Moving house is an exciting time. It’s a chance for a fresh start in all aspects of your life – a new location to explore, a chance to show off your design skills and improvements to your quality of living to name but a few.
However, if you go at the process of moving house full steam ahead, you may end up regretting some decisions later down the line. Calm, considered and careful is the way to go. Ask the right questions, take a look at all your options and really think about what you want. This should all start with your first house viewing. Here’s how to make the most out of one without getting too giddy with excitement!
Write down a list of non-negotiables
Before you even book a viewing, you should create a list of your requirements in a new house. You’re obviously moving for one reason or another but there may be other things you’d really like to see in your future home. For example, you’re moving to a bigger house to start a family but you’d also like to be closer to a train station for commuting and have an en-suite for that little bit of extra luxury. Note down all these things in a notepad or on the Notes section of your phone for safekeeping. Refer to them when browsing properties and again when you go to your viewing. Don’t be afraid to ask the estate agent or homeowner about your non-negotiables whilst you’re there – which leads us to our next point.
Ask as many questions as you can
Not everyone likes to ask questions and we understand that. However, further down the line, you’ll wish you had! Along with your list of non-negotiables, take along a list of questions to ask at your viewing. Don’t hold back from inquiring about things you spot whilst you’re there, too. And if you’re too embarrassed to ask at the time, get in touch with the estate agent afterwards to clear any confusions or queries up. We recommend checking things like:
- What are the neighbours like?
- Where’s the nearest pub/shop/train station etc?
- Why are they moving? (This might be too personal for some people but it’s always worth asking)
- What furnishings/decor will the homeowner be happy to leave for the next person? (Remember this, especially if you’ve got your eye on something in particular!)
- Have they been happy living here?
- Has any recent work been done to the property?
Visit the property at different times
Of course, we always recommend viewing a potential new home more than one time if you’re really serious about buying. However, people often forget that a house (and its surrounding areas) can seem very different during different times. Viewing the property on a summer’s Sunday afternoon may seem peaceful, idyllic and picturesque. Try going again – even if it’s just driving past – on a rainy day, at night and during rush hour in the week. If you still love the property in all weather and conditions, chances are it’s the right one.
Don’t get too distracted by the decor
Of course, we all love to look at the way people do up their houses. It’s normal to be nosey. But don’t let this natural human instinct ruin your chances of finding your dream home. Granted, a house that is well-presented usually means it’s been well looked after. However, don’t let the furnishings act as a facade that will leave you disappointed when you step into your new empty house. Look beyond the decoration and see the bare bones of the property. After all, this is usually what you’ll be left with come completion day. The same applies to decor you’re not keen on – if you can get the property for a good price, why not set aside some cash for a DIY do-up project?
If you’d like to start viewing properties and truly begin your exciting new adventure, don’t hesitate to browse our current listings and get in touch. Alternatively, we can offer advice on selling your home if you’re not quite ready to buy yet!