Are you thinking of buying a second home? Here, we take a look at the top five elements to consider before you take a further leap up the property ladder.
1. Evaluate your needs
This is the first thing you need to establish before you view any property. Are you looking for a weekend getaway house for example, somewhere to retire to, or even a home to rent out to provide you with an additional income? Whatever your reason, this will determine the type of premises you are after, and also the perfect location.
So, think about this carefully to avoid wasting both time and money on a house that simply does not cater to your needs.
Shop around for a mortgage! Your impulse may be to take whatever terms the lender on your first property offers you, without considering other options. However, this may not always be the cheapest – see what else is out there to allow you to get the best possible deal.
A tip would be to do this prior to viewing any properties, so you know how exactly much money you can spend.
3. Don’t impulse buy
You are already in a fortunate position to be able to buy a second home, so don’t jump in with both feet without doing your research! The age-old saying ‘location, location, location’ speaks volumes, and local amenities such as schools and shops play a huge part in the decision on whether to buy a property or not. If you can find a house in a prime location, it is bound to hold high value in the future.
4. Hire a local estate agent
If you’re looking for a second home in an area that you’re not too familiar with or have never even visited before, it is important to not only do your research, but to also hire someone local to assist. This way you can get reliable advice from an expert that knows the area well, as well as the housing market.
5. Calculate additional expenses
It’s easy to forget about additional expenses, or simply push them to one side when buying a second property. Home insurance and maintenance are both factors to consider – like it or not they cannot be avoided. Some of the most desirable locations could be at a higher risk of natural disasters such as flooding, so insurance can be extra pricey. Make sure you get several quotes before making an offer on any house – you don’t want to buy a property and realise you can’t afford to insure it each year.
Maintenance can be anything from giving the walls a fresh lick of paint, to rewiring the whole house. Properties are unpredictable, so it is essential that you set aside funds to rectify any problems as soon as they arise. Equally, if you are letting out the property it is your responsibility – in most cases – to ensure upkeep for the tenant.
Whatever your reasons for buying a second home, remember there are a lot of things to consider! The best advice we can give you, is take your time and try not to make a rash decision – you don’t want to end up with something you’re not happy with.
If you’re looking for some advice on buying an extra home — or you’re on the hunt for one — get in touch with the Applegate team, we may be able to help!