03 Feb Great questions to ask when viewing a property you’d like to buy
You’ve spent countless hours hunched over your laptop looking at the property websites. Driven around the area and made a list of potential properties. Made a list of your ‘must haves’ and now have been to see potentially suitable properties. Tried to make polite conversation about how you actually like wood chip wallpaper and how ‘Flamingo Dream’ is actually a great colour for a bathroom.
Now here you are in a house that actually ticks all the boxes.
With so many thoughts about if you’re making the right decision and what it would be like to live there, it can sometimes feel like you’re under pressure. So to ensure your viewing process runs smoothly, I’ve put together some great questions to ask your estate agent when you finally find a property that you’d like to buy:
What are the current owner’s timescales?
You may already have this date before you arrive but it is always best to double check. If the owners are in a rush, they may be in the mood to negotiate.
Have any major works been completed?
You must know the history of the house before you purchase it. Afterall, you don’t want to be left with a massive bill for a loft conversion done without building control approval!
What’s included in the sale?
Some sellers will buy new appliances and furniture when they move and might be willing to sell the property with white goods and furnishings included. Additionally, don’t presume all the fixtures and fittings are automatically included.
Is the area nice and what amenities can you find nearby?
It doesn’t matter if you are single, a young couple, retired ‘downsizers’ or a big family of five, it’s always best to find out what is nearby as you never know what you will need. Find out where local schools, shops, restaurants, transport and supermarkets are in relation to the property. It’s sometimes an idea to go back at different times of the day to see what the area is like. A school or pub can change a complexion of an area at different times of the day.
What are the neighbours like?
Such a great question! Although it will give you an insight into what it might be like to live there, try and keep an open mind about the neighbours; one person’s nightmare is someone else’s best friend.
Have there been any failed transactions in the last 12 months?
If there has been a sale fall through in the last year, there might be an underlying problem. This should come up when your solicitors do their due diligence but best check before you incur any unnecessary expense.
Have there been any insurance claims in the last few years?
Issues like subsidence or flooding from the sea or rivers should come to light when your solicitor conducts their checks and searches on the property. However, things like leaks or boiler breakdowns probably won’t come up and may come back to haunt you in the future.
What’s the parking like?
Parking can be a key consideration especially if you’re opting for a town centre location. If you’re considering a place without a driveway, garage or designated parking space it is important that you discuss what the current owners do for parking. There might be residents parking permits available but these might be expensive so make sure you know how much these are. There may also be parking restrictions at peak times or if the house is near a station. The last thing you want is to park in someone’s spot or get a ticket right after you move in.
Where is the stopcock, electric and gas meters?
It’s really good to know these things ahead of time particularly if you’re buying a repossession. Otherwise, you can find yourself at the property on the day you move in wondering how to turn the water and utilities on!
At Anthony Jones Properties we take pride in knowing our properties inside out. We welcome any questions about the house or the local area. If you need any advice on home buying, why not call us for a chat on 01325 776424.