Talk to The Tipton about a mortgage

It is important for you to understand what you can afford before you start viewing properties and a telephone appointment with one of our Mortgage Advisors can assess eligibility and determine how much we are able to lend. We are here to support you throughout the buying process, and can provide you with a mortgage certificate, so you can start looking for your new property with confidence.

10 Questions to Ask When Viewing a House

When you are looking for a new home, you will view a range of interesting properties. It is important to make the most of these viewings and there are some important things to consider during your short time at the property.

The below guide explains the top ten questions to ask and why.

1. How long has the property been for sale?

When considering an offer on a property, it is helpful to know how long it has been up for sale. If the property has been for sale for several months, it may be worth asking why – it could be for many reasons, such as the sellers not getting a suitable offer or there could be something more concerning which you haven’t yet noticed.

2. Has there been much interest in the property?

Understanding how much interest there has been in the property can be helpful when considering your offer. If there is high interest in the property, it is more likely that other buyers will put in offers as well. However, if there isn’t much interest this could allow you some room to offer below asking price.

3. What is the area like?

It is important to thoroughly research the area you are looking to move to before making an offer on a property. Consider things such as crime rate, local schools, and nearby facilities before making your final decision. 

4. How long have the sellers lived there?

You should ask how long the sellers have lived at the property for. If they have lived there for a short period of time, you may wish to look deeper and understand why they are looking to move so soon.

5. Have there been any renovations done recently?

While this question will typically be picked up by a standard valuation or during the conveyancing process you should ask if any major renovations have recently been carried out. Particularly with older houses, you may find that remedial works have recently been carried out with a good guarantee, or it could be that damp treatment is ongoing – which could affect your decision! RICS and structural surveys are also available at an extra cost to give a more detailed evaluation.

6. Is the property listed or in a conservation area?

This should also show up during the conveyancing process, but you can ask earlier! If the property is listed or under a conservation area, ongoing maintenance costs can be expensive and it can affect any internal and external renovations you may wish to do to the property

7. What’s the water pressure like?

While this may seem like a strange question, it is something which can cause concern. If there is a very low water pressure, then you may want to consider the ongoing costs and possible issues surrounding this.

8. How much are your monthly bills likely to be?

While your household bills will be highly dependant on the amount of services used, it is worth asking what the current occupiers are paying. It is important to consider that leasehold properties may also have ground rent and maintenance charges to account for. This can help to assist with budgeting by giving you an idea of potential monthly outgoings should you buy the property.

9. What is included in the sale?

This will also be covered during the conveyancing process, however there is no harm in asking at the property. It may be that certain things are not included in the sale (e.g. curtains and blinds), which may have a large impact on your budget and overall decision on the property.

It is important to ensure anything agreed verbally is also included in the formal contracts. Speak to your Conveyancer to let them know of anything agreed verbally and they can look at this for you.

10. Are the sellers buying a new property and when?

While it can be difficult for sellers to secure a property before theirs has sold, it is not impossible. If your sellers have found their new home this can speed up the process. You may also want to find out what the chain above them looks like (how many people will be moving on the same day) – this can have a large effect on the time it takes to complete and even moving day.

Other things to consider

There are other things you may want to think about before making an offer:

  • Is the property freehold or leasehold?
  • Does the property look in good condition?
  • Have there been any structural issues?
  • Would you feel safe and secure in the property?
  • Is there a working security system?
  • What are the neighbours like?
  • What direction does the property face and does it get much sunlight?
  • How old is the boiler and has it been serviced regularly?
  • What parking is available?
  • What are the broadband services and connections like?
  • What are the local transport links and what will the commute to work be like?

Next Steps

To make an offer, many estate agents will request your decision in principle to show you can fund the purchase. Our expert Mortgage Advisers can assess your situation and confirm how much the Society will be able to offer. Then, once your offer has been accepted contact us to complete your full mortgage application and get moving!