What to ask when buying a house


What to ask when buying a house?  There are so many questions you can ask when buying its easy to get confused.  Especially when looking at multiple properties.

​As property experts we know exactly what the most popular questions people ask when they are buying a house. We’ve seen it all go badly wrong and we’ve seen it all turn out like a dream, so we thought it would be helpful if we put together our compendium of questions you should ask when considering buying a house or putting an offer in.  So what to ask when buying a house?

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You may think this is a strange picture to put on a post about buying a house, but have you ever considered the view? You wouldn’t believe the number of people who go to view a house as it’s getting to dusk and fall in love with the interior, only to be sadly disappointed when they return in broad daylight to find that the property is sited near pylons or near to a halfway house or a recycling plant that they didn’t realise was just around the corner. So looking at what to ask when buying a house there’s many questions that can shed light on the property to see if it’s the right one for you. Ask the vendors if they are happy there, is it a quiet area and what particularly have they enjoyed about living there. Questions cost you nothing and could save you a ton of money in the process by helping you avoid a potentially costly mistake if you go ahead without being armed with all the facts. If the property is near a pub you know it’s likely to be noisy late at night, particularly at weekends. That should be reflected in the asking prices so, again, budget will come into play. Your expectations will rise in line with your budget. Having only under £100,000 to spend on a 2-up/2-down house will mean you may accept a poor location; if you have over, well you will be able to afford a better location – it’s a judgement call and only one that you can decide on, but it will affect your quality of life and so it is important that you make such a decision with your eyes wide open.

The location of the property will affect the asking price AND your offer

What’s that famous phrase? “Location, location, location” – you really can’t put enough emphasis on this. So bargain accordingly, if you think that no off road parking, or being sited near a school, or having a view of an industrial estate etc is not going to affect the price, you are wrong! It’s a great opportunity to bargain so be sure you ask for this to be taken into consideration when putting your offer in.

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Fees for buying a house

No one likes spending out money unnecessarily and the fees involved in buying a house are estimated to run to around £5,000 – £10,000. For the seller, this will include conveyancing costs (the legalities), and local authority searches, buyers will have to pay for movers and other items such as mortgage arrangement fees. Whichever way you cut it, it’s a lot of money in anyone’s book. One way in which you can slice a considerable amount off this figure – money you can put to good use such as carpets, curtains, or other items for your new home – is by using an online estate agent – the fees will, literally, be a tenth of what High Street estate agents charge. This is because we don’t need to run expensive cars, or pay rent on our offices, or pay staff to man the phones – as we’ve put our services online we can reach out to all the main property sites ie you’ve still got all the muscle power to hand and we can pass on these savings. This means that sellers are increasingly turning to online sites and it means buyers are more likely to get a bit of a bargain hopefully as the seller is not paying out so many fees.

The property viewing

What to ask when buying a house during the viewing?  When viewing the property itself ask about maintenance, rewiring, look at how old the kitchen is and the state of the carpets and paintwork inside and out – all these items are things that are costly to replace if you have to do so. If any of them look like they need replacing, this a strong bargaining chip, so don’t be shy about being nosey. Ask to look at Guarantees, ask how the house is heated and if it has double glazing – anything that might cost you in the long term either to replace or because it increases running costs. Put away any potential embarrassment and ask! You won’t feel shy about having secured a discount of several thousand pounds in the shape of the vendor accepting an offer from you that’s lower than the asking price, so don’t feel awkward about asking these details – it’s a financial transaction at the end of the day, and a large one at that.

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Do you have any other questions that work for you when looking at what to ask when buying a house?  If you do why not help our community and leave a comment in the comments below.

For more information and free advice on a guide to buying a house successfully look at our website, contact us, or give us a call on 0800 228 9012 to speak to a member of our property team.