Posted on 22 July 2020
Our Top 10 Questions to ask when viewing a property!
Right, let’s get to it! Having worked as an Estate Agent myself, I felt it would…
Right, let’s get to it! Having worked as an Estate Agent myself, I felt it would be a good idea to share my knowledge on what key questions you should be asking when viewing a property in order to be sure there are no hidden surprises further down the line! Without further ado, I have left my top 10 below! (in no particular order):
- Has the property had any offers? – I am sure a lot of you are thinking “Estate Agents are professional salesmen so of course, they’re going to say ‘yes’ in order to pressure me into making an offer”. Surprisingly, you would be wrong in thinking this. The UK has really closed the gaps in sleazy sales tactics to mislead the customer. Agents are not allowed to pressure you into purchasing anything with false information. If they do say there is an offer on the table, you should trust them.
- Is the boiler and electrics in full working order? This is probably one of my ‘must asks’ when viewing a property. Replacing the boiler or rewiring the electrics can cost thousands of pounds. Make sure the property you are purchasing has a full-service history as an issue with either of these could hurt your pocket.
- Does the property have a chain? This is always handy to know as the smaller the chain, the smaller the amount of risk in things going wrong. (‘Chain’ – when there is another property linked to the transaction i.e the person/persons selling is also purchasing another property at the same time. Be advised your chain could consist of multiple properties.)
- Is the property Leasehold or Freehold? A Freehold property means that you own the land and the ground that the property is built on. A leasehold property is when you own the property but not the ground the property is built on. Freehold is always better as when it comes to making changes, for example, extensions or renovations you will not be needing any landlord consent.
- What interior is included with the property? I have seen people take many things with them when leaving a property all the way from light bulbs to carpets. Trust me when I say, it’s always worth checking as it would be a real shame to turn up to your new home… minus the wallpaper!
- Turn on the tap to check the water pressure. Now I know this is not a question but it’s definitely something you should do to make sure there are no underlying issues within the pipes running through the property.
- Has there been any work done to the property since it was built? By ‘work’ I mean extensions or renovations. It is always wise to see the changes first hand to ensure the work has been done properly and whether or not there is still scope to extend or add additional features.
- What is the area like? If you’re new to the area, finding out important information like where the nearest hospital is? What traffics like during rush hour? are we near a flight path? are there any local gyms? There are certain things Google can’t tell you so ask your agent!
- Why are the current sellers moving? Not many other blogs or websites will point this one out, however, having this information will give you a big advantage when it comes to that all-important moment of putting forward an offer. If the sellers are in a hurry, you never know, they may be willing to negotiate more flexibly. If they are not in a hurry you know they will be expecting offers to come in close to the asking price.
- Has anyone ever had planning permission or a mortgage denied on this property? If you are purchasing with a mortgage, your mortgage lender will send round a valuer to determine if the property is worth lending on. If (in very rare cases) they do not believe the property is habitable, they will not provide a mortgage to the purchaser. This information is recorded and could save months of hassle and money down the line. With regards to the planning permission, if you are looking to make some changes or improvements to the property it is always wise to understand the restrictions before you commit to the purchase.