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SquishTheWhale 5 Aug 19 08:32 AM

House viewing tips!
Hello lovely dibbers

My husband and I are off to view a house this evening! While we've viewed plenty to rent in the past this is our first time viewing to buy.

Any tips for first timers on practical things we should be looking for, and questions we need to ask? I'm sure there's different things that will need to be checked when buying instead of renting!

On paper we absolutley love this house. If we love it as much in person, how should we play making an offer? Obviously we don't want to come across as desperate but we wouldn't want to lose it by dithering either. It's at the top of our budget so we can't afford to go higher if they decide to try and squeeze us and it only came on the market a few days ago. How long would you wait after viewing before making an offer?

pinkyoshi 5 Aug 19 08:53 AM

I found this really useful.

If itís only just gone on the market theyíll probably be expecting very near to the asking price. If you like it and know itís the one Iíd offer as soon as possible, providing youíve already got your mortgage in principle sorted.

SquishTheWhale 5 Aug 19 08:56 AM


Originally Posted by pinkyoshi (Post 13996776)

I found this really useful.

If itís only just gone on the market theyíll probably be expecting very near to the asking price. If you like it and know itís the one Iíd offer as soon as possible, providing youíve already got your mortgage in principle sorted.

Thank you will look at those tips!

Yes we have a decision in principal from the bank. I think you're right that they'll be expecting the asking price- hubby thinks we should offer under though.

parisdisneyfan 5 Aug 19 08:56 AM

We are in the process of selling and buying and it is 20 years since we did it before so all new to us again!

Have you driven past it? We found loads we loved on paper but when we drove past, not so much! Next thing to do is check the local area for similar and check what they sold for on Rightmove, around here though the market has dropped in the last couple of months. Look at the pictures again and have ideas of whether it needs anything major doing ie bathroom, kitchen etc not decor unless it is really out there or definitely needs modernised ie 1970's. Why are they selling? Although if you are in rented not such a big problem. Also look at whether things are built in or freestanding - including freestanding in your offer is always a good thing ie we will pay asking price to include white goods/TV/curtains? Ask about neighbours, shared drives, boiler age, windows, any developments nearby, schools if you either need them now or in the future. Will the agent show you round or the owners? I haven't met our buyers but we did meet our sellers.

I agree that if it has just gone on the market then yes they will be expecting near asking. But remember when you have your survey that if something crops up then you can ask for a reduction, similarly if your mortgage valuation is lower.

Our buyers said that our kitchen was lovely but then when they discovered it was 10 years old asked for a reduction! But we are getting a reduction on the property we are buying for work that needs done so even stevens really.

We made an offer a couple of days after viewing as did our buyers. We originally offered around 7% lower and that is roughly what we are buying at. Our buyers have got it about 2% under the current asking price although we had reduced it.

Other than that, I would say first viewing enjoy being nosey. Then think about it and 2nd viewing plan what you would do with it, where your furniture would go? Good luck with it all, very stressful but will be lovely to own your own place xxx

Pjamas 5 Aug 19 09:02 AM

Ask if the water pipes are shared and what the deal is if they leak - we had a house with a shared water supply - total nightmare!

I would also inquire if there are very big trees around and ask if there is any cracking on the walls - also ask if itís built on clay as big trees and clay can equal subsidence.

Also view houses you arenít sure about, we ended up feeling confused and we viewed everything we might like for a while and it really helped firm up our ideas and opened us up to new things too.

Jaspercat10 5 Aug 19 09:03 AM

I agree go and see if you love it on first viewing and then book a second if you do to view all the sensible bits, there is too much info to process on a first viewing go and have a nose and see if you love it 😊

THOscar 5 Aug 19 09:09 AM

View it in daylight and nighttime too. You spot different things at different times.

Niki Mouse 5 Aug 19 09:16 AM

We have recently moved. It took a long time to sell our previous property and as a result we stopped viewing (only looked online) as was becoming disheartening... when we did have an offer we looked at loads, even things that didnít look great on paper as sometimes itís surprising. Thought we had found the one, but wanted to be sure so looked at lots more (we did this all really quickly within a week) anyway, my advice would be to look at as many as possible.

Pumpkin Pie 5 Aug 19 09:17 AM

Which way the house is facing. Do you want a north facing garden for instance. It may not seem that important compared to other things but I think it is.

SquishTheWhale 5 Aug 19 09:37 AM

Thank you for all very useful responses!

The house is 30 minutes away from where we live at the mo so we've never been anywhere nearby, we definitley need to check out the area. Had a very good mooch around google street view. If that sounds weird for us to buy in an area we've never been to, we can get at least 50% more house for our money there as it takes us out of the commuter belt for London.

From at least the pics that are online, the only thing I easily pick up on that needs attention is the back garden fence which looks on its last legs. Could we use something like that as a reason for offering less than the asking price? DH says that's silly as its onlu a fence.

We will definitley follow the advice to view on different days at different times. Maybe we could go back at the weekend if we like it.

I'm pregnant and this will be our family home so schools are important. There's two primary schools nearby, 0.3 miles away and 0.5. We'd have a preference for the 0.5- is there any way to find out catchment areas? I googled and the only advice was really to contact the school which doesn't work in the school holidays!

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