Top questions to ask at a viewing

Top questions to ask at a viewing

Viewing a property can be a bit overwhelming. You’re in someone else’s home trying to imagine yourself living there. It’s usually worth taking a step back and giving yourself a moment to breathe.

Don’t be afraid to ask us questions! Below are a must ask questions when viewing any property to get an idea of whether this is the one for you or not!

1.       Why are they selling?

This should always be first on your list. If the seller is moving because there’s something wrong with the property – like structural problems or noisy neighbours – it’s worth knowing sooner rather than later.

2.       How long has the property been on the market?

If it’s fresh on the market find out how popular the property is, has it got any interest already?  Are you the first through the door? Are you likely to have to offer higher or at a closing date? These are all important factors to consider when thinking of buying a property. There could be a lot of people moving out of the area, or lots of new people moving in. With this information you can get a much better picture of the area you’d be moving into and how it might change over the years.

3.       How long has the seller owned the property?

Has it been six months or sixty years?

If the property has changed hands a lot recently, that could be a bad sign – ask the agent why nobody stays with the property long term. If the owner doesn’t live in the property, find out who does and ask why it’s on the market.

4.       5. Who lives next door?

It’s only natural to want to know who you’re going to be living next to. Is it a family home, a student flat or an older couple?

5.       6. Is there a chain?

A chain is the link of buyers and sellers in a set of property sales. Many people will be buying and selling properties at the same time, and this forms up a link of transactions called a chain.

Usually, the shorter the chain the faster you can move. If there’s a long chain, there’s always the risk of a buyer pulling out, which can mean it all falls through.

Cash buyers are often in a very strong position when it comes to negotiation. That’s because there’s no delay for mortgage paperwork and the sale can take place very quickly.

6.        What goods are included in the sale?

It’s nice to know exactly what you’re getting for your money. Is the freshly painted garden shed included? How about that fancy wall-mounted television? Washing machine – that brand new tumble dryer?

If there’s something very specific to the property that you’ll struggle to replace when you move in – like tailor-made curtains for unusual windows – ask if they can be included. The sellers probably won’t have anywhere to put them, and it saves you hassle when you move in.

Don’t take anything for granted, because there’s a lot the seller could take with them when they move. Naturally carpet, light fittings and blinds are included in the sale but always check in case the current owner has reason to keep these just as sentimental value.
The same applies to ‘white goods’ – like washing machines and dishwashers. These are big purchases, and it’s worth knowing if you’ll need to budget for buying a new one.

7.       Which council tax band is the property in?

If the property is in a lower council tax band, it could save you hundreds of pounds a year – saving you a lot of money in the long run.

It may seem small considering how much you’ll be spending on the house but, knowing the cost of council tax per month will help you budget for life in your new home.

8.       Have any renovations been done?

Any work done on the property is worth knowing about, especially if it was recent. If work was carried out, find out how this changed the property and who worked on it – were they professional builders? Did they have planning permission? Is there any guarantees for any works carried out such as damp, woodworm etc?

9.       How old is the boiler, and when was it last serviced?

Know your boilers. It can mean the difference between instant hot water and heating up an entire water tank whenever you fancy a shower. Combi boilers are the most modern boilers available to homeowners. They provide instant hot water without needing a large water tank. Find out when the boiler was installed, when it was last serviced, and if there’s a warranty that comes with it. And older boilers will eventually need replacing, so bear that in mind.

  1. Is there any factoring?

This is mainly something to look out for in apartments however there are such things as Greenbelt charges which are applicable with houses – even larger ones. These are for the communal grounds in housing estates. For flats these with consists of a monthly payment for communal upkeep, something buildings insurance is also included. Make sure you are aware of these costs before purchasing as this could become a costly exercise!

Next Home have a variety of properties which may be what you are looking for, give us a call and we will get your viewing arranged for what could be your dream home! Call us now on 01738 44 43 42.