Be prepared to view as soon as possible – the best properties in the market generate the most interest, so don’t waste time when it comes to buying your new home
Put yourself in a position to buy – qualify yourself for a mortgage as soon as possible. When buying a property it is worth providing your estate agent with as much information as possible, from your property being chain free to your readiness to proceed with the purchase.
Multiple viewings – try and view the property more than once at different times of the day especially at weekends, when everyone is at home and at rush hour to check how local roads may be affected by congestion. If this property is to be yours, then you need to have as much information as possible about not only the house but also the surrounding area.
Look beneath the surface – when buying a house it is important to make an impartial judgement based on every aspect of the property. Make sure you distinguish between major work and ‘cosmetic’ work. Don’t let your judgment be clouded.
Protect yourself – property surveys maybe expensive but they can uncover any major defects which may help you renegotiate on price or even reconsider the purchase.
Location, location, location – research the local schools, shops, parking, transport and neighbours to get a good feel of what it will be like to live there. Your dream house may not be so idyllic upon further investigation.
Don't rule out offering the full asking price - if you find your ideal home and it is priced correctly, consider offering the full asking price to avoid losing out. By bidding correctly and accurately for your desired property you stand a much greater chance of securing the house without being outbid or rivaled.
Ask lots of direct questions about the property – if this is going to be the property of your dreams then ask as many questions as you can about it. Remember to ask about any previous building work that has been undertaken, as well as any major faults that have been highlighted.
Remember, the estate agent works for the vendor – the agent is working on behalf of the seller so be willing and eager to view properties so that you’re top of the agent’s list to call. Stay in regular contact so they are aware of your interest in their properties.
Don't be put off by a property that is on the market at a low price compared to others in the area – in this housing market some of the best deals are sold on behalf of developers and lenders and are priced to sell quickly. These properties include some of the best value houses around, so remember to give these your consideration.