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News: Brits advised: 'Do your homework'

Buying a new home can be a daunting experience and never more so than when you are moving to an unfamiliar area. More people today are leaving the place where they grew up or have established roots and are migrating to other areas within the UK - with financial or work related reasons proving one of the main driving factors...

Ill-informed buyers who fail to research a new area can find them selves located just round the corner from a crime ridden estate, in the catchment area for a failing school or worse – and these mistakes can be extremely costly, both socially and financially, and in some cases can make the property almost impossible to sell on at a later date.

David Bexon, managing director of Smart Media Services Ltd said: “Today there is a vast amount of information available to those buyers who are sensible enough to do some research before making any final decision. Visitors to email4property.co.uk can review lists of the top and bottom ten streets in a given postcode by average price, search average house prices in the region or even in a given street as well as obtain further information and tips for buying in unfamiliar areas.”

When purchasing in a new area there are some essential things to investigate:

  • Are developments planned for the area – the property might overlook green fields now, but what does the future hold?
  • What is the crime rate?
  • Are there good schools– even if children are not a consideration, top performing schools draw people to the area and can drive up house prices?
  • What public transport is available and is it close to major road networks?
  • What amenities are close buy – local shops, restaurants etc?

Once you have researched the area and you are ready to start viewing properties there are some further steps you can take to ensure the property is right for you:

  • Arrive early to get a good feel of the neighbourhood, and prepare any local questions you may wish to ask
  • Don’t make an instant judgement. Do not be influenced by the sociability of the vendors, their taste in furnishings or their (un)tidiness
  • Assess the accommodation that the property provides
  • Assess the general state of repair: Roof, walls, windows and doors, plasterwork, wiring, plumbing and heating, kitchen fittings and bathroom sanitary ware
  • Find out if any recent improvements been carried out or will be required (e.g. double glazing, insulation, kitchen) and if guarantees exist
  • Consider where the morning and evening sun will be
  • If you are interested try to revisit at a different time on a different day when the area may be busier or quieter.

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