First time buyers: 4 top tips
Updated: Mar 2, 2021
Do your sums. Then do them again.
You’ll need a lot of money upfront for your deposit, ideally 10% or more – especially if you want the best rates. There are also loads of extra costs involved when you buy rather than rent, like legal costs, lender fees, buildings insurance or service charge, buying new fixtures and fittings… so make sure you know what to expect.
This is the biggest purchase you’ll ever make, and there are lots of moving parts. It’s almost inevitable there’ll be some hiccups during the whole process. Don’t be tempted to rush through a deal that looks good or the first bank you speak to – make sure you take the time to find the best deal for you and your finances.
Have your documents ready
You’ll need to show proof of your identity, income and outgoings, and address to apply for your mortgage. So you’ll need high resolution scans of documents like your passport, bank statement and utility bills. Having these all ready in advance your application will move along much faster.
Finally, don’t forget the fees
On top of stamp duty (if you’re paying this tax) there are many potential add-on fees to factor in when you buy a home: arrangement fees, valuation fees, legal fees, booking fees… If you can afford it, keep back some of the money from your deposit to cover these.