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Buying Guide

Determine your budget for your purchase

Buying a property is likely to be one of the largest transactions you ever make, so it is important that your calculations are correct from the start.

Every homebuyer works to a budget, whether you're looking at studio flats or 6 bedroom country estates you'll need to create a budget to determine the properties available in your price range. Take into consideration your income, any savings you wish to use and if appropriate, any cash you plan to use from the sale of your existing property (equity). If you are planning to use the equity held in your existing property we would always recommend getting an accurate up to date market valuation from a local property expert. Moore and Partners take into account the location of your home, condition, demand, competition and recent comparable evidence.

It is important to factor the essential services and taxes involved in buying property into your budget calculations. The most common include - stamp duty, conveyancing, searches, land registry and surveys.

Selecting the right mortgage

Whether you are applying for your first mortgage, re-mortgaging or securing a mortgage for an investment property - speaking to an expert in this field is will guide you towards the right provider. Independent Mortgage Advisers will take into consideration your personal circumstances, your plans for the future, the lending criteria set out by the banks and building societies and then source the best options from across the whole mortgage market that meet your requirements across the term of the mortgage.By deciding on a mortgage first you will give you the confidence and understanding of your budget that you require to put you in a strong negotiating position when you find a property you want.

Selecting the right property

Online search tools have made the process of finding property easier than ever, however you may not be aware that some of the best properties with desirable locations, price or size sell before they are listed on the larger property portals.

Create property email alerts to stay informed of newly listed properties that meet your desired requirements. We also recommend getting to know the team at your local branch who will be happy to keep you up to date with properties that match what you are looking for.

Ask yourself what you need, what you would like and what would be a bonus. Think about where you want to live and what you need from that area such as local amenities, transport links and schools. You may prefer new build properties with the convenience of no chains and low maintenance. Knowing in advance what you would be prepared to compromise on is difficult but by doing so often ensures that good homes are not missed.

Viewing a property

Build up a better perspective of what the property is like to live in by visiting the property at different times of the day taking note of which way the garden faces and the parking arrangements It is important to also get clarification on what is and is not included in the sale price, ask to the see the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), look up at roofs, look at windows, ask what type of heating it is and ask if there are any guarantees. If you wish to buy the property, it is advisable to arrange an independent survey to investigate any areas of concern.

After the viewing providing feedback to your estate agent will help them gain a stronger understanding of your wants and needs in order to find the best property for you.

  • Contact your estate agent a few days prior to your preferred viewing date and time to avoid disappointment
  • Take a notepad and ask lots of questions. If your agent does not know them straight away, they can find out for you after the viewing

Making an offer

Congratulations - you've found a property you want to buy. The next step is to reach an agreement with the seller on the price. Think about this carefully. Give consideration to how the property compares with others you have seen, how well it meets your requirements, your budget, competition from other interested buyers, and consider what would happen if your offer is not accepted.

There is a common misconception that you should not pay the asking price but this depends on the property. There are many examples of property selling at or above the asking price where there has been interest from lots of buyers.

Arranging Conveyancing for your purchase

Conveyancing is the process by which the legal transfer of property from one person to another is made. The buyer or their solicitor/ conveyancer examines the legal documentation for the property and raises questions in order to approve the contract of the sale. By appointing a solicitor such as Moore and Partners Conveyancing in association with Lewis and Dick Crawley ahead of your offer being accepted the process of buying will be quicker.

After your offer has been accepted, you and the seller of the property will exchange details of your solicitors/ conveyancers who will then contact each other to start the process. They are there to advise and guide you through the process, explaining the paperwork and forms and making sure that your purchase is as it should be. We know that this stage of the purchase can be stressful so Moore and Partner Estates Conveyancing have developed a system which allows you to monitor the progress of your purchase online to keep you informed.

Arrange a Survey

There are three main types of survey.

If you require a mortgage then your bank will normally insist on Mortgage Valuation to establish that the property is good security for the loan. Although you probably pay for the Mortgage Valuation you would not normally get a copy of the report and therefore we would always recommend having your own survey done in addition.

A Homebuyers report is ideal for more conventional residential property built within the past 100 years and includes a detailed visual inspection of all aspects of the property that are available for inspection.

A Building survey (also referred to as a full or structural survey) is suited to older properties, or properties which may have different forms of construction or undergone major changes. A detailed inspection of all visible areas of the property is undertaken.

Worthington Rusling Chartered Surveyors was formed by Peter Worthington and Chris Rusling in 2009 to combine their many years experience in providing valuation and residential surveying services throughout Sussex and Surrey.    Peter and Chris offer reliable and personalised service from the first phone call or web contact.  Customers return from years past for their friendly and thorough reporting.

If you have questions about a property that you are purchasing, call Pete or Chris at their Mid-Sussex office on 01825 740761 to discuss your particular concerns and requirements.  They will be happy to help.

Finalise Mortgage & Insurance Requirements

You will receive a Mortgage Offer from your lender in which the final details of the loan you are receiving are stated. You and your solicitor/conveyancer should check this carefully. You may also be required to arrange life assurance to cover the loan and building insurance as you exchange contracts.

Exchange of Contracts

The exchange of contracts is the legally binding part of the process.

This is when you hand over a deposit (the normal sum or liability is 10% of the purchase price). Contracts are exchanged once both you and the seller and your respective solicitors/conveyancers are satisfied that everything is in order, a date for completion is agreed and from this point both parties are legally bound to go through with the transaction.

The day of completion

This is the day the balance of the monies are transferred via the banking system and the day on which you will get the keys to the property you have bought. For most people this is the day that they physically move into the property with all their furniture and possessions. Moore and Partners have a list of registered removal companies who can pack, move and even unpack your belongings, to relieve some of the stress of moving yourself.

The above is intended to serve as a guide and help you through the process. We do understand that buying a house, though exciting, can be daunting. If you would like to arrange a time to speak with one of the experienced estate agents at Moore and Partners Estates then please contact your local office and they'll be happy to get you started.

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