Finding the right next home for you and your family is always a complex mix of needs and wants, so getting the most out of your viewings is vital. The first viewing is often driven by emotion – the heart – but the second viewing should always be based on using your head. In this article we give you some tips on how to get as much information out of a second viewing so that you can make an informed decision.
Do your homework
Check out the broadband speed, mobile coverage etc. of the area before your second viewing. Don’t just assume that you are within the catchment area of your desired school – dive into the detail. Websites such as Property Detective provide information on considerations such as local demographics, crime rates, transportation, potential nuisances etc.
We recommend that you should visit at least two or three times to get a clearer picture of how the property might work for you and your needs. If you visit at different times of the day you can gauge aspects such as the availability of street parking, pedestrian traffic levels and any through-traffic. Inside will give you an insight into how the lighting levels very throughout the property at different times of the day.
Look out the window
Consider the different viewpoints from different levels and sides of the property. Pull back the curtains or lift blinds to get a sense of what the natural light levels are in various rooms. Don’t forget to take into account the season when assessing how much ambient light there is.
Have a look at the property from all sides. Establish where boundaries of the property are and consider what lies beyond them. It will also give you an opportunity to check out roofs, drains, the garden etc.
Test the property
Don’t be afraid to test the fixtures and fittings (within reason of course). Assessing the water pressure by running the taps or checking out the age of the fuse box is a great way of determining when the house was last rewired. The EPC rating which must be supplied when any property is being sold will give you an insight into how energy-efficient the property is but ask about insulation, check for double-glazing etc.
Get the camera and tape measure out
Is the house big enough for you? Try and picture where you’d like things to go, take pictures and pull out the tape measure if you need to. There’s nothing worse than moving into your new home and realising that your key ‘must keep’ furniture doesn’t fit. Don’t forget to have storage in mind as you look around too! Is there enough cupboard space to fit your pots and pans? Are the white good appliances in the kitchen or wardrobes in the bedrooms built in or free-standing?
When you visit the property, take a list of questions that may influence your decision. Speaking to the current owners can be a great way of getting an insight into the property and what it’s like to live there. Don’t be afraid to ask why they are leaving, what do they love the most about living in the house, do they have any ‘problem’ neighbours (the body language will speak volumes if they do)There’s no such thing as too much information!
Choosing a home as opposed to purchasing a property is an emotional as well as a practical process. You often hear people say things like ‘We just fell in love with the house,’ but try and think logically too. That beautiful tiny little cottage you have your heart set on may not be the best idea if you have a family of 6!
If you would like to find your next home visit www.northwooduk.com to find a list of available properties for sale. Alternatively contact one of our local offices to discuss your family’s buying needs.
Northwood is one of the largest and most recognised estate agents in the U.K. and the leading supplier of Guaranteed Rent to give landlords complete peace of mind.
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