Buying your first home can feel like a very daunting process. With so much to consider and so many different choices to make, you may be feeling anxious about not always getting it right.
Although it can be a challenging time, it is also a huge milestone in your life, and one that you should be able to thoroughly enjoy.
To help you get the most enjoyment from this experience and to avoid any common mistakes, check out the following three tips for buying your first home!
1. Explore the Help to Buy Scheme
The Help to Buy scheme is a great way to make home ownership more affordable for first-time buyers.
This is a government-backed scheme that provides an equity loan to aspiring homeowners. It means that if you are only able to pay a 5% deposit on a house, then the government may lend you up to 20% of the price of the house. This means that combined, you can pay a 25% deposit and get on the housing ladder much sooner!
The equity loan is interest free for the first five years, so you can have the peace of mind that your new home will be financially manageable.
This scheme is currently only available for those who are interested in buying new build properties, so be sure this is what you have in mind before doing further research.
2. Strengthen your Credit Score
Before you start looking at potential houses to buy, it can be very helpful if you work to strengthen your credit score.
Mortgage lenders will assess all of the relevant financial information before they decide whether to lend to you or not. This information can also influence the rates that each lender is prepared to offer you. If you do not have a good credit score, then you may find that you miss out on the best mortgage deals. This could unfortunately mean that you are either rejected or that your monthly payments are much higher.
It is easy to access a copy of your credit report for free through a range of online services, so be sure to gather this information as soon as you can. You can then get informed on the best ways to strengthen your credit score if necessary.
3. Assess the Neighbourhood
A huge mistake that many first-time home buyers make is fixating too much on the house and not assessing the whole neighbourhood. It is fantastic if you find the house of your dreams and you can afford it, but if the neighbourhood does not suit you then you are not going to have a good time living there.
When checking out a potential neighbourhood, you should make sure you know what is nearby. In doing this, you will have to consider your needs in the present day as well as in the future.
For example, if you are planning to have children soon, then you will want to be close to a good school. It is also helpful to be near shops, transport links, and other public services.