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Advice for first time buyers

If you’re looking to get yourself onto the property ladder but not sure how to get started my fiancĂ© and I can sympathise. We are currently learning what we need to do to get a place of our own. Having rented before we know the basics of property search but we feel like buying is a far more daunting prospect. As first time buyers we need to help each other out as much as possible! Below I’ve shared some of our experience as well as helpful advice that I have received from family, friends and colleagues. Here’s to finding somewhere!

Start your research early. When asking around, this has been most people’s top tip. I’ve been told that the earlier you start to research and the more you know, the stronger your position will be when you find somewhere. You’ll know when it ticks all of the boxes (also you’ll know what those boxes are!). This research can focus on local schools, public transport routes, nearby amenities and planned future developments. It really depends on what your priorities are (good park for walking the dog would suit me!). If you are looking in a new area then I would definitely recommend speaking to friends or family who live nearby or a local estate agent.

Understanding the financial side of things. This was the thing I was most apprehensive about to begin with. After taking a look at mortgage calculators online and speaking to Sewell & Gardner’s very own independent Financial advisor, Mark Stannard from Heron Financial, we are starting to understand what our best options would be. I would definitely recommend speaking to Mark as he can also help you with your mortgage. (You never know, you may be able to afford more than you initially thought). Once we properly understood our mortgage situation we have tried since to factor in all the other bits and pieces such as utility bills, council tax, budget for additional work as well as many other things! In truth I am still trying to get my head around this one so if you’ve worked it out please tell me!

Finally I’ve learnt that there’s no such thing as a silly question. Whenever we’ve not been sure, asking and getting answers to questions has helped us along the way. Luckily working for Sewell & Gardner I have had lots of really helpful advice from colleagues. Please feel free to pop in to any of our four offices where we are more than happy to help you with your property search and I wish you all the best on your journey to find your perfect place!

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Harriet Gooder Senior Office Administrator

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