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Searching for a new home; hints and tips

Hunting for a new home doesn’t have to cause a big headache – especially if you follow our top hints and tips to make the experience quick, smooth and hassle-free.

Set a budget and stick to it

When you’re looking for a new house, it’s easy to get side lined by ‘ideal’ or ‘promoted’ homes that appear on property websites. While these can sometimes be a good fit, avoid distractions by sticking to a realistic budget and use search filters to only view houses within your price range. By staying focused on houses that are affordable for you, you’ll speed up the search process considerably. 

Scope out your favourite areas

If you’re overwhelmed by the number of properties on the market, focus on a few specific areas to begin with – whether that’s a particular suburb, commuter town or rural village. Pick your areas according to your priorities, from excellent transport links to first-rate schools, leisure facilities or good old-fashioned community spirit. 

Differentiate between wants and needs

Before starting your search, spend some time thinking about what you absolutely need and want from a new home. Needs are must-have features – perhaps a driveway, third bedroom or office space – while wants are the nice-to-haves such as an integrated dishwasher or a utility room.

Your ‘needs’ will be your main priority, while ‘wants’ will be a big bonus, so make sure you bear these in mind while searching for and viewing houses. 

Get help from the professionals

New build property developments often have sales and marketing staff located on site who offer support to people looking for a new home. However, for older properties, a good estate agent should be proactive in helping to find the right home for you.

If you’re in a position to move quickly, get your agent on-side and let them know exactly what you’re looking for in a new home. With your agent on-board, they should act as your champion and do some of the legwork for you. 

If you’re not in a position to move quickly it makes sense to be as prepared as possible by speaking to professionals as soon as you can, giving you a head start when you are able to think seriously about buying.

Arrange viewings in batches

Instead of viewing houses sporadically, arrange appointments back-to-back so you can directly compare homes one after another. Make sure you take a notebook or jot down information on an app like Evernote or Google Keep, and ask the agent or developer if it’s ok to take pictures. The next day, you’ll be able to review your notes and photographs and make a more informed decision. 

Think outside the box

If you’re struggling to find a new home that works for you, try changing the way you’re searching. There are lots of property websites worth checking out that cater for every requirement, while it’s also a good idea to visit local show homes to find out more about new build developments. 

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