After reviewing properties that fit with your essentials list and budget, (see What to Do Before Buying Your First Home) you and your partner can now begin to arrange property viewings. We found Saturdays to be most convenient for our schedules because of our days off.
While viewing properties, remember that keeping your standards high will ensure both you and your partner are conscious of what you value in your home. Taking your time with your home buying choices will allow you to remain at peace with them long after the home becomes yours.
Making the most of weekend inspections
Another reason weekend inspections work best for us is that agents are often more flexible on weekends. Since these are open inspections, it is not necessary to schedule a specific time for viewing. Inspecting properties back to back also makes it possible to fit in a lot of viewings in one day.
When we arrive at the inspection, we take lots of photos to review later. Photos can be helpful to share with each other after visiting the property. This allows us to see things we had not seen when we first walked through the home. To get the most value out of engaging with the property agent, ask relevant questions according to your search.
Here are some of the photos we took while at an inspection for a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartment in Lane Cove, NSW, Australia.
Making the most of viewings by appointment on weekdays
Weekend property viewings can be rushed and crowded sometimes. Keep in mind private viewings can be arranged. If you seem to be smitten with a particular property, ask the agent if they are available to make an appointment for weekday viewings. Whether you visit on the weekend or during the week, be gracious and thank the property agent for their time.
How to gain more information by speaking to the agent
Here are some questions you can employ to engage the property agents during viewings:
- How long has the property been on the market?
- What is the property owner’s reasoning behind selling at this time?
- Are there common areas in the building? If so, may we see them today?
- What is the history of repairs on the property? When were the repairs done?
- Are there other current offers on the table for this property?
- Is the property owner willing to negotiate the price? If so, based on what factors?
In my experience, viewing a property multiple times only allows me to bring more confidence and knowledge to the process. The financial commitment of buying a home likely outweighs any other investment you have made before. Returning to the property without your “rose-coloured glasses” will only enhance the process. Or, you may have even missed an important feature of the property.
I am vulnerable to “property crushes.” If there is a breakfast nook, I picture my husband and myself in it on a leisurely Sunday. If there is a sunny window, I see myself reading in a chair with all of my houseplants nestled nearby.
What’s not to like about a home where you can see yourself whacking nails into the walls to hang your sentimental items without any consequence? If you seem to have this same affliction, try to use your keen eye and imagination to grow into a picky property hunter. The importance of viewing months and even years in advance of buying your home cannot be overstated enough.
Even when you are not ready to buy a home that week or even that month, the information you gather is invaluable to the process. This way when it is your week or month to buy, you will have gained invaluable knowledge unique to you throughout the process.
This article is part of the “Finding Your First Home” series. More articles in the series:
Let us know if you’d like any specific guides that will help you with your hunt for your new home, either as a comment below or via email – [email protected]
Also published on Medium.