Buying your first home is a really big step, and can be really scary. Whether you are buying on your own, or with your partner, the whole process can put a lot of people off. The mortgage, solicitors, fees, deposit, and paperwork can seem very daunting, and sometimes it can be hard to understand all of the legal jargon. With so much to consider, where do you even start when thinking about buying your first home?
1. Be realistic – know what you can afford
Ok, we have all been there, right? Browsing Rightmove on a dull Sunday afternoon for the ‘house of our dreams’. You might have your heart set on a 4 bedroom house with a huge garden. However, in reality, your budget might only be able to stretch to a 2 bedroom house – minus the garden. To avoid being disappointed further through the process, be realistic from the very start at what your budget will stretch too. Only look at properties within your price range, and certainly, don’t view any properties that are wildly over your budget.
2. Deposit and other fees
How much deposit you have to put down for the property will determine how much mortgage you will need. You might not know exactly what you can afford so early on in the process. Online mortgage calculators can help to understand what mortgage you might be able to afford. Also, don’t forget you will need to pay other fees, such as removals, solicitors fees, mortgage arrangement fees, so make sure you account for these extra costs as well.
3. Get some financial advice
Having a good mortgage advisor really will make a world of difference to you and the house buying process. They are there to guide you through the whole process, which for a first-time buyer can seem very daunting. They will help you work out how much you can borrow for your mortgage, as well as having access to the best deals suitable for you. Some even offer an initial assessment for free, so you can find out where you stand without having to commit to anything.
4. Get paperwork organised
Throughout the whole process, you will need to provide proof of your income and ID, so be organised and get all your paperwork together from the beginning. Generally you will need to have 3 months bank statements, 3 months payslips, proof of address documents and bank statement to show your deposit. Getting all your paperwork sorted and ready will make the process a lot easier and smoother for you.
5. Speak up
If you don’t understand something to do with your mortgage offer or anything to do with the house buying process – speak up! Don’t sign on the dotted line, or commit yourself to a mortgage if you don’t fully understand the legal terms and conditions. This is where having a good mortgage advisor can really help. Ask them to explain everything to you in language that you understand, and make sure that you are happy with everything before committing yourself financially.
Have you bought your first home? What was your experience like? Do you have any top tips that you can share? Let me know in the comments