Buying a new home is an exciting time, even if it can be a daunting process. If you plan to buy a new house in 2021, you need to be aware of a few extra things. Here are some of our top tips to help you buy a home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Be Prepared For Delays
The pandemic has created a large backlog for many banks, so you may need to be patient while waiting for your mortgage to be approved. You could ask your mortgage advisor or broker for a clearer picture of the timescale, though it can be difficult to judge during these challenging times.
You may also notice delays in getting to view homes, as there will need to be additional cleaning and safety precautions taken. Knowing that this is part of the process and unavoidable due to COVID will help reduce the frustration you may feel.
Preparation Is Crucial
Being prepared is a vital part of any house move, and with the pandemic, preparation has become even more essential. It would help to ensure you have all elements of the process planned out, from viewing a property to moving in.
Much of the house buying process will be carried out online due to the pandemic, so it is a good idea to get the ball rolling as soon as possible. You could consider making a list of all the things that need to be done and working your way through them methodically.
Take Advantage Of Different Funding Options
There are plenty of funding options to choose from, as the government and banks are trying to kick start the housing market again. You should make sure you look into every option and find the ones that work for you. There is still some time left for the stamp duty freeze to apply to you if you move quickly.
If your savings have taken a hit because of the pandemic, there are still funding options available to you. For example, you may qualify for a 95% mortgage, which can apply to both first-time buyers and home movers alike. Check out this article from Conveyancing Expert for more information on 95% mortgages.
Get Professional Advice
It can help to ensure you have the best advice when buying a home. It would help if you shopped around to find the right conveyancing solicitors, mortgage brokers and estate agent. Ideally, they will have a COVID-19 safety policy in place and will be able to advise you of the various steps you and they need to take to conduct the house sale safely.
Negotiate The Asking Price
It is always worth negotiating the asking price of a property. For example, you could consider whether the property needs renovation or is on a busy main road, putting you in a better position to make a lower offer.
You could consider making an offer below what you can afford to pay and then enter into negotiations. This can be a lengthy process, but you may end up saving decent amounts for your trouble.