As Adam and I get further and further into the house buying process we have discovered things that as first time buyers we weren’t aware of.
I decided to write this post as I am sure we aren’t alone in this situation. And I wanted to talk you through the process we have taken so far. This post refers to a new build that is currently under development.
Choosing the house you want
With so many new housing developments, it pays to have a look around. With Adam and I going into this as a couple we decided to write a list of things that we both wanted from the house, things we would compromise on and things that were a deal breaker. Off road parking was a must for Adam, as where I wanted a living room at the back of the property.
We spent a deal of time looking around. Making sure that we checked in the areas we wanted and checking websites for updates. Until finally we found a development that ticked all the boxes in our buying list.
We visited the developer’s office on the first day they opened. This meant that unfortunately, they didn’t have any brochures for us to look at. However, we were able to see the site plans and have a wander around the first complete show home.
It was on our second visit to the office (later that week) that we expressed an interest in our chosen plot and completed a form declaring so.
Did the early bird catch the worm
Expressing an interest in a plot doesn’t mean that you are buying it. Some developers (like ours) offer an early bird. This means that you place a fee of £100 on the plot you wish to purchase. This fee secures you the option of first refusal when the house is listed for reservation.
Reserving your house
When the house is ready to be reserved you will be contacted to see if you want to proceed. If you agree then your next step is to attend the office and complete the reservation paperwork. Here you will need to prove that your mortgage and deposit are all in order.
When purchasing a new build still under construction, you are required to go through a series of plans with the contractor. This is because you don’t have a house to view and are required to be shown everything that is involved in the house. This process involves you viewing floor plans, electrical plans, water pipe plans etc. After you have approved the plans and signed the paperwork, you will then be required to pay a reservation fee (minus your early bird fee). This fee confirms your intention to purchase the house and starts you on the road to the contract stage.
After you have secured your reservation, you will now want to instruct your solicitor. They will then start the paperwork ready to carry out the next stages of the process, which involve: conveyancing, land registration etc. You should also make sure your mortgage advisor is aware that you have reserved the property.