Buying a property in the UK is one of the most stressful experiences, equally complex and often lengthy too. The only way to make it easier is to wrap your head around the basics of how it works so you are less likely to be taken by surprise along the way. Here’s our step by step guide to buying a property in the UK:
Before you start looking for a property of your choice – you must get an idea of how much you can afford to spend on a property. Set a realistic budget, re-consider your savings, cash and any other form of personal loan. Some buyers require a mortgage loan in order to purchase the property.
The larger the deposit and the better your credit score, the more favourable the mortgage deals you are likely to avail.
There is no point in getting excited about the selected property, if you cannot afford it. And you can avoid unnecessary disappointment by discussing it with mortgage provider. Depending upon your credit score, size of your deposit and regular income, the mortgage provider will give you an educated guess of the amount you can lend.
Another point to consider is that buying the property is not the only expense in the coming months. You need money to pay for stamp duty, surveys, conveyancing fees, building insurance, moving costs and home repairs and improvements costs. Ponder on few other things such as what if your financial situation changes, what if interest rates rise and how to cover other expenses so experts suggest to never overstretch yourself when it comes to mortgage and financing.
Now, you have a clear idea of what you can afford, so it’s right time to start looking for a dream property. You can either check the listings of properties for sale on Copperstones or contact one of the team members directly and discuss your requirements. It is better to get some personal advice and look through the private properties’ portfolio and pick the one according to your budget and personal preference.
The best tip is to choose an area, do some digging and evaluate it through all the perspectives before signing on the dotted line.
Once you finalize a property, it’s time to arrange a viewing – directly without any assistance or with professional real estate agent. It is recommended to accompany a skilled negotiator to show the property around. Take all the time that you need for viewings and re-arrange the visit, if you need to go back again to make up your mind. Buying a property is a complex decision and it must be finalized only when you are cent percent sure about it.
If you have grasped the idea of how much to offer for your selected property, discuss with our agent so that we can inform the seller. After finalizing the financial terms and conditions with the seller and once the decision is reached – both parties will be informed in writing. Once your offer is accepted, you will have to coordinate with the solicitor.
Before lending you a significant amount, the lender will urge you to conduct a valuation survey. It will help you both assess the condition of the property and detect any structural issue (if any). It is an optional point but it is better to be aware of any issue before buying – so you can make a well-informed decision.
After this survey, you will be in a better position to negotiate the final price of the property and ask the seller to fix the structural issues. You can also decide to step back from this point and pull out of the deal altogether. You are not tied in so the decision will be yours.
When you want to proceed from this step, both parties will sign and the seller’s legal representatives exchange the signed contracts. At this stage, the buyer also forwards the deposit to the solicitor, which is normally 10% of the total purchase price. Before the exchange of contracts, you will have to prepare several things in advance such as written mortgage offer, an agreed handover date and property insurance.
Once the contracts are exchanged, the agreement is a legal binding for you to buy the property. If you pull out after this without any solid reason, your deposit can be forfeit.
The deal will be closed when you pay for the property and take ownership of it. At this stage, a date will be set to complete the sale, and the balance of funds will be transferred. You will need to settle your outstanding bills with your solicitor and pay all the due charges including stamp duty.
Once the money is transferred to the seller’s account, you can collect the keys from the agent and move into your property.
This is the best part of the deal, the property is now yours and you can move in.