Historically many first time buyers have simply bought their first home in the same area as where they lived with parents or were previously renting. Now, with property prices rising steeply and demand outstripping supply in many of the more desirable locations, many first time buyers are having to broaden their search area.
Even if you’re fortunate enough to be able to buy your first home in your preferred location, we still advocate doing all you need to do to make the most informed decision you can. Wherever you’re looking to buy, regardless of how well you think you know an area, it’s important to do some research and get the knowledge you need before making the biggest financial commitment of your life to this point.
With the help of the internet these days there’s no excuse not to do some solid research. You should try and find out current information, such as crime rates and house price trends, but also see what plans there are in place for an area’s future.
Are there any plans for regeneration? Is your town or city centre expanding? As demand surges many previously undesirable areas on the outskirts of towns and cities are undergoing redevelopment and are set to become prime areas in the future. Can you get in while it’s cheap?
If you’re not familiar with an area you also need to do some physical research. View different properties. Visit the area on different days of the week and at different times. Get out there in the community and get a proper feel for the place.
Look at it from all angles. What are the transport links like? What’s it like at school times and rush hour? Traffic is a growing problem in small towns so pay it some attention, especially if you have children or are a regular commuter. If you are a parent, you will of course want to look into the local schools too. Do you need to consider catchment areas?
What’s the quality of life like? Is there a good selection of things to do and local amenities? Ultimately, does the area seem like a place you want to call home?
Talk to experts. Estate agents will be happy to provide you with information about the area, the types of people it attracts, and house price trends.
Look at costs. Can you afford to live in the area? Check council tax costs and estimate what the rest of your bills will be.
Finally, look at it long term. Are you planning to make any big life changes in the short-medium term, such as changing career or having children? Will living in the area and the type of property you’re looking at serve you well for however long you’re planning to stay in your first property?
One thing you may not have considered is education and training. You’ve saved hard for years and you’re not just buying your first home and moving yourself and maybe a young family, you’re also making the biggest investment of your life. It makes sense to protect your hard-earned money and your family’s future by equipping yourself with real property knowledge. Knowledge that all successful property investors have worked hard to acquire.
If you’re new to property ownership/investment then you need to know how to eliminate beginner mistakes. Avoiding big errors now by investing a few pounds in some basic training can save you many thousands long term. Not to mention the many years that one costly mistake could set you back on your journey up the property ladder. The average first time buyer in the UK is now 34 years old, they can’t afford any setbacks.
Learning from the best in the business will steer you in the right direction and help you to avoid the potential pitfalls of buying property whilst you enjoy all the upside of being a proud home owner.
Owning property can be an exciting experience leading to huge financial gains. Whether your aim is to buy your first property for personal use or you’re looking for a potential long term investment, following our training programme will set you off on the path to success.
Find out more about our property training courses today. We can help with a full range of modules including: