Once you have a list of properties that meet your initial criteria, here are some tips to make sure you are not buying something which is unsuitable…
- Get your bearings and find out where the sun falls on the house and at what times of day.
- Check cupboards and wardrobes for the smell of damp or mildew.
- Check the state of floorboards, doors and windows - are they in good/original condition?
- Take note of cupboard and wardrobe space - many older homes don’t have built in storage.
- Run the taps and showers to see what the water pressure is like.
- Is the area you're considering buying in improving in value - is there anything that may affect it in future? Don't limit yourself to looking in one area.
- Take time to walk or drive around the neighbourhood. Are there shops and services (e.g. post office, banks, etc.) nearby?
- Where are the nearest bus stops and/or train station?
- What is the traffic like - are you on a main road that could get busy at peak times or be dangerous for children and pets?
- Is there parking on the street? Although your car may be accommodated you will also need some space for visiting friends and family.
If you like the look of one or two of these homes after an initial viewing, make sure you do some research on them.
Council websites offer valuable information and there are also companies such as Quotable Value offering research and statistical data for a small fee.
A building inspection from a reputable inspection company is also good way to find out if there are any problems associated with the building (from minor repairs to major problems).