Nothing in life stays the same. The plans we make for today and tomorrow can change over time and new plans will need to be made. That’s certainly true when it comes to buying houses.
There are all sorts of reasons for moving.
It may be that you originally bought the biggest house you could afford and now find yourself in a better financial situation that allows you the scope to get your dream home, or put you on the next step towards it.
You may have bought when you lived alone but have since found a long term relationship and, perhaps, a growing family and a need for more space.
Maybe you’ve become empty-nesters or perhaps have unexpectedly found yourself on your own again and simply don’t need the space you once had.
But when it comes to moving to somewhere new, there are some tactics that can serve you well, whatever your reasons for leaving where you currently are.
Find a potential buyer first
On the assumption you’re set on upping sticks come what may, it’s worth considering either completing the sale of your existing home before you buy, or at least finding a potential buyer for it.
Why? Because it puts you on the front foot when it comes to negotiating a deal on your next property.
Of course, selling up before you start house-hunting in earnest means being prepared to rent for a time, and there are downsides to that, too – not least of which is the ‘dead’ money you’ll spend on renting that might otherwise be earning you interest.
But if you do the sums and are realistic about how long the whole process will take – and, consequently, how long you may need to rent for – you may find it’s an option that could work for you.
There’s a good chance the person you end up buying your new home from is trying to move up the ladder themselves, meaning they’re going to be part of an upward chain – and house chains can be the cause of nervousness for vendors.
If you’ve sold, you’ll automatically be of value as a buyer because there will be no downward chain – and that makes the person you want to buy from a valued buyer, too.
One possible outcome from this is that the person selling your next home may well be prepared to accept a lower offer from you simply to strengthen their own chances of successfully completing their onward move.
And if your circumstances mean you can’t sell up before you buy, having your house on the market and being able to prove genuine interest in your property still strengthens your buying hand.
Get a mortgage agreed in principle!
We hear lots of tales of estate agents who seem less interested in you if you haven’t sold your own property and don’t have a mortgage in place. They may be true, they may not be – but having a mortgage agreed before you ask an agent for a viewing of your dream home will certainly benefit you.
Being able to show you have secured the necessary funding for your intended property gives the agent confidence in you as a buyer and means they are much more likely to recommend your offer to their client.
A mortgage approval in principle is usually valid for around three months (some lenders offer longer terms).
By working with a professional mortgage broker like Oportfolio you can reduce the stress that can be associated with the mortgage application process, because your broker should take on the job of completing the application for you – leaving you to simply check and sign the forms – and then managing the application through to a decision.
Having a mortgage in principle doesn’t guarantee your offer on a new property will be accepted – in the end, it has to be the right offer for the seller – but it certainly makes you more attractive as a buyer.
These two simple tactics together prove you’re serious about buying and that alone has significant value to the people selling a property and those who represent them.
If you’re thinking of moving house this year, come and talk to us about getting a mortgage in place. You can also watch our short video on the ins and outs of moving to get some insight into the things you might want to consider as you take your next step up or down the ladder.
To find out more about our friendly and professional mortgage service, fees and what we can do to help make sure you’re not paying over the odds for your mortgage, why not visit www.oportfolio.co.uk or give us a call on 020 7371 5063.
Oportfolio Limited is an appointed representative of Primis Mortgage Network, a trading name of First Complete Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority
Your property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Oportfolio Ltd fees are payable on application. We charge a broker fee for property purchases of £495 and a remortgage/further advance fee of £395. Our product transfer fee is £295.