Top tips for buying a new home

Posted on August 9, 2017 | News, Property

Buying a new home can be a smart move but you you’ll need to do your homework first

Buying a new home direct from the developer has lots to recommend it. Many prospective purchasers enjoy the thought of being the very first owners of their home and relish the opportunity to have a say in the choice of some of the fixtures and fittings so they know it will be absolutely perfect from the day they move in. It’s reassuring to feel that you won’t have any repairs or renovations to plan and that your investment is protected by a 10-year NHBC guarantee. You’ll also likely benefit from the latest heating and insulation technologies which will reward you with some of the lowest running costs around.

But there are pitfalls for the unwary. Here’s a quick guide to making sure you have a hassle-free experience.

Do your homework on the developer

It’s important that you buy from a reputable developer, so it’s worth spending a little time researching your housebuilder. The developer’s website is a good place to start – it will give you a sense of the number of developments they’ve completed and provide you with more information on the type of properties and locations available in your area. If the company already has completed developments in your region, consider visiting them in person to see what they’re like and how they compare to the glossy sales brochures. You can even ask residents about their experiences. Testimonials from buyers who’ve been through the process are invaluable. Do your own homework on transport links and local schools if these are important to you.

Tip #1 Look for a developer with a long history of successful projects in your area.

Make every penny of your budget count

One of the advantages of buying a new home is that you can often specify elements of the finish – assuming you buy early enough in the process – which means you won’t have to shell out for upgrades once you’re in situ and won’t have to face the prospect of living with someone’s tired carpets or dodgy decorative decisions. Plan as far ahead as you can; it makes sense to invest in a home that will feel comfortable for a good few years, as moving is an expensive process. There may be several properties on any one development that will suit your needs, so list your priorities and go for the one that feels like the best fit. Often, securing a property at the beginning of a development will offer the best value for money.

Tip #2 Advise the developer of your interest as soon as possible to secure the best deal.

Insist on a good finish

NHBC warranties won’t necessarily cover the quality of the finish so make sure you’re happy with the home you end up with. Your developer should offer you an inspection and demonstration meeting prior to handover. You can expect to encounter a few minor snags when you take possession of your property but your developer should be able to work with you to resolve any issues that you agree need attention. One of the trademarks of a good house builder is the care they take before, during and after completion.

Tip #3 Make sure the developer hands over any guarantees for white goods on completion.