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Over the past year, there has been an unexpected property boom in the UK. The stamp duty holiday and the introduction of 95 percent mortgages have seen more people want to get onto the property ladder than ever before. But the hunt for a home has become more challenging for buyers who now have to compete in an incredibly crowded market.
Ross Counsell, a chartered surveyor and Director of regulated property buyers GoodMove, has offered his tips to those trying to get onto the ladder while the market is so busy.
1. Be prepared
Mr Counsell’s “best advice” is to be prepared during the booming property market.
He said before you look to buy, you should research the area and any streets you’re interested in living on.
The property expert also advised looking at listings every day so you know what you’re looking for when it arrives on the market.
He also advised having a mortgage-in-principle ready to go which will speed up the process if you decide to put in an offer.
2. Use an estate agent
Not everyone uses an estate agent, but it’s often the best way to find a property.
Agents know the local market and will let you know of any suitable properties before they go onto the market.
It’s also a great way to view a property before anyone else does.
3. Look under your budget
Average house prices are currently at £275,000 – an all-time high.
Buyers are now finding themselves paying way above the asking price for properties.
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To try and remain within your budget, Mr Counsell recommends looking for properties under your budget.
If you find something you like, you can put in a higher offer which will put you in good stead compared with other buyers.
4. Act fast
It may sound like common sense, but it’s best to act fast when you find something you like.
However, buying a home is a huge decision so shouldn’t be rushed but if you view a home you love and know it’s right for you, then you should put an offer in straight away.
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A vendor simply wants to sell their home and make some money so they will always favour an interested buyer.
5. Be flexible
In a crowded market, being flexible and easy to work with is paramount, according to Mr Counsell.
To make a seller’s life easier, you can allow them to pick the closing date if you can afford to.
In a property chain, this could be more difficult.
6. Stay positive
The current market can be disheartening for some buyers whose property transactions may fall through or they may be gazumped.
Although it’s tough, it’s important to remain positive and now let negative events get you down.
Mr Counsell added: “We’ve seen an unprecedented property boom in the UK over the past year, with lockdown changing buyers’ demand, from smaller flats/houses in the cities to more spacious properties in rural locations.
“With such high demand, it has become more difficult for buyers to get their foot on the property ladder, but we hope these tips will help advise anyone looking to buy a property compete in today’s crowded market.”
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