What does buying my first home involve?
For first time buyers, terms such as stamp duty and solicitors’ fees may seem overwhelming on top of the stress of saving for a deposit and arranging a mortgage. However, when you are clear on everything that is involved, the process is relatively straightforward. If you have a solicitor in place at the beginning of the process, they will be able to keep you informed and updated during every step, especially if things seem a bit complicated. The main steps to buying your first home include:
- Find a solicitor that is right for you. Here at Stephensons, our solicitors have a wealth of experience to help first time buyers through every step of purchasing their first home. Ensuring you have a solicitor at the start of the process will let estate agents or property developers know you are taking your search for your first home seriously.
- Visit estate agents and view properties. The more the better – you will find out what each estate agent offers, how they work and the specifics you are looking for when buying your first home. Developing a relationship with a few estate agents is also a good idea in relation to new properties coming on the market. When agents are aware of first time buyers’ requirements, they will contact you if a suitable property comes on the market.
- Find out how much you can afford. When you have a clear understanding of how much you can save for a deposit on your first home, this will also give you guidance on how much to spend on a property. Shop around for a mortgage when you know how much you will need and see who offers the best rates. If first time buyers are buying a new-build property, you may be entitled to apply for the Help to Buy scheme, this means you will only need a 5% deposit.
- Make an offer and get a survey done. When you have found your ideal property, get the ball rolling by making an offer; ask your solicitor for guidance on how much to offer if you are unsure. Your solicitor will also be able to give you more information on getting a survey carried out, and stamp duty if you need to pay it (properties up to approximately £125,000 do not need to pay stamp duty). When all this has been finalised, you will be able to exchange contracts and become an official homeowner.
You can rest assured that our dedicated conveyancing team will deliver a personal service and you can be confident that there will always be someone who has worked on your property purchase available to speak to should you need advice and assistance. For more tips for first time buyers, click here.
We understand the importance of being kept up to date with the purchase of your home and as such have developed an online tracking system, to let you check on the progression of your property purchase 24/7. With updates also available by email, post, over the telephone and text message you can be sure that you know where we are up to every step of the way.
To find out more about buying your first property, contact Stephensons on 0203 816 0076 for a free, no obligation initial chat with one of our legal advisors, or fill out our online enquiry form.