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Things you should know before buying a property in Harrow

Buying a property is said to be one of the most stressful things you’ll ever do. It doesn’t have to be, it’s all about how ready you are at every level in the process.

First thing’s first, just like when you decide to go shopping you need to know how much you can spend. How much am I able to borrow? What are the latest rates being offered by mortgage providers? Whilst many banks/building societies have a branch on the high street where you could easily pop into, there are also online-only providers many that don’t.

Questions will race through your mind; What are these lenders offering, how can I find out, could it be a better option for me? The advantage of using a mortgage broker is that they are working for you as opposed to a mortgage advisor in a high street bank who will only tell you what they can offer. Meanwhile mortgage brokers, have access to all sorts of lucrative deals, many of which may not be accessible to you directly. So, it’s worth bearing in mind. Even if you’ve been with your bank for years, it pays to explore all your options.

Many people believe that if a friend or family member has secured a certain mortgage deal, they’ll also be able to get the same. Sadly, it doesn’t work this way. Banks process a vast amount of information about you before deciding what they are able and happy to lend you, so each assessment is unique. Who knows, you may even get a better deal! Once you’ve gone through the process you should have an (AIP) arrangement in principle.

Armed with your AIP and now knowing what your budget is, it’s time to shop. In the early days of my career, advertising was not the same as it is today. Go online and you’ll see: a few clinks you have access to more properties for sale than in an estate agent’s window. Register with a few agents, see how they differ. You want to feel comfortable with who you’re dealing with – this is a major spend, after all.

Shortlist the properties you’re interested in, arrange to view them. Just like when buying clothes, you need to try them on, see how they fit for size. Housebuying isn’t like buying a packet of batteries. I always express to my buyers it’s prudent to see a handful of properties before making any decision. Once you have decided which property best suits your needs, it is time to ‘Put that offer in!’

In our next article we’ll get into how to secure the property you’re after, the conveyancing and legal side of things, what’s involved, what they do, terms that are used and what they mean. I’ll show you that buying property can be painless. For now, have your finances in order; an AIP will definitely portray you as a serious buyer and someone who is keen to buy.

We do work with a number of mortgage advisors who will gladly be able to help and explain the process. Do give us a call on 020 8426 0631 or email us at  harrow@hiltonandfox.com