Purchasing a home for the first time can be a daunting experience. In addition to being what is likely to be one of the most expensive purchases of a lifetime, there are few resources in the way of education. This means that first-time buyers navigate the process of examining and purchasing a home with only their own limited experience to help them through the process.
As a result of this, many first-time buyers encounter a number of unexpected issues that ultimately hinder the process of exchanging and even harm their investment. To support those going through this very experience, we’re sharing six of the most commonly missed issues buyers overlook when purchasing their first home.
Buying a home is not a quick process. First-time buyers are generally more attractive to sellers, due to the absence of a chain, but can still cause several issues. Even the exchanges that seem rather straightforward can be easily extended and go on to take weeks or even months longer than originally intended.
As such, buyers should never make too firm an arrangement around when they will exchange or even move into a home since delays are extremely common.
Leases And Freeholds
Before entering into any agreement, buyers should be aware of the important distinction between leases and freeholds. A freehold purchase entitles the buyer to both the property and the land upon which it stands, being far more attractive since homeowners are then able to make changes with greater freedom. Leases, however, do not entitle the buyer to the land itself and require them to consult with the landowner before making any major architectural changes.
Checking The Landscape
The land around the home should be investigated as much as the property itself. Flood maps can be useful to describe potential risks from nearby water sources or rainfall, while the garden itself should be indicative of any potential weather damage. Be sure to inspect outdoor areas, as well as any outbuildings like log cabins, to seek signs of potential issues.
Investigating The Area
Looking at local online groups, as well as visiting the home outside of office hours, can be an illuminating way to understand a property. Many buyers fail to do this and end up experiencing issues involving parking or noise pollution.
Looking For Moisture
There are a number of environmental issues that may cause issues in a home. Few, however, are more problematic than damp. Moisture damage, such as mould, can be difficult to spot and easy to conceal. As such, potential buyers should do their best to scrutinise a property for any sign of dampness.
Weighing Up Ongoing Costs
A home may be beautiful on the surface but cause some issues in the long-term. One common example of this occurs when buyers fail to acknowledge the cost of utilities. If a home is not properly insulated or has an old boiler, it can very quickly become a costly investment, especially during the winter. Be sure to consider not only the immediate cost of a home but also how much it will be to run across the years.