Moving house is one of life’s big decisions and one that most of us will only make a handful of times. Whether you’re a first-time buyer, are moving to accommodate a growing family or maybe downsizing to something more manageable, choosing the next place to call home is an exciting prospect.
To help ensure that everything goes as smoothly as possible, Cala has put together this handy guide with five tops tips for planning your next move.
1. Do Your Research
While most of us move relatively close to home, if you’re looking to buy further afield then it’s worth researching your chosen location carefully.
Make sure it suits your priorities and lifestyle, whether that be good schools, public transport links, pubs and restaurants close by or outdoor leisure on your doorstep.
Join local Facebook groups to get a good feel for a local community and you could even ask questions of existing residents on forums who know the area best. It’s also worth checking property prices via websites such as www.zoopla.co.uk, as sometimes shifting your search criteria by just a couple of miles can get you much more for your money.
2. Smart Financial Planning
Plan ahead and get your finances in order. Create a detailed household budget so you’re clear on what you can afford.
Cala can put you in touch with an independent mortgage advisor who will let you know how much you could borrow, will research the market and provide free advice on the best mortgage deals for your individual circumstances.
Having a good credit rating can make all the difference in securing a competitive mortgage rate. Access your credit report online via one of the main credit agencies, such as Experian or Equifax. Make sure all the information they have about you is up to date and follow their advice on improving your credit score if needs be.
3. Get Savvy on Schemes
Housebuilders such as Cala offer a range of schemes and incentives to ensure a smooth move. These include a Part Exchange service, where Cala acts as a cash buyer for your existing home, and Assisted Move whereby you can receive practical and financial help to sell your existing property. On selected developments, Cala can also help with stamp duty and legal fees to help keep costs down.
The Government’s Help to Buy initiative is designed to enable purchasers to buy a property with just a five per cent deposit, with the Government providing an equity loan of up to 20 per cent of the value of the property.
Find out more about how we can help you move.
4. Get Organised
Moving house is always a great time to declutter, and a clear and tidy house will look spacious to prospective buyers. Tackle the task on a room-by-room basis, sorting unwanted items into those to go to friends and family, charity and recycling.
Invest in clever storage to keep each room as clear and clutter-free as possible; this will help people visualise themselves using the space without having to look past someone else’s possessions.
While you’re having a good sort out, why not create a separate box for all the relevant paperwork and documents that you’ll need during your move. This can save a huge amount of time further down the line. Put aside documents relating to your property including Land Registry titles, gas and electric certifications and copies of planning permissions and building regulation paperwork for any home improvements.
It’s also a good idea to have the paperwork for your mortgage application close at hand, including proof of address, proof of income (or company accounts if you’re self-employed) and recent bank statements.
5. Add Value
If you’ve got a house to sell, look at it through the eyes of a prospective buyer and make some improvements to really maximise its value. Tackle those DIY and repair jobs that you’ve been putting off and spruce up your front garden for that all-important first impression.
Kitchens and bathrooms are some of the most important rooms in the house, and buyers can be put off if they think they’ll need to replace them straight away. Bathrooms can be given a new lease of life with a deep clean or consider installing a new bathroom suite which can make a huge difference and needn’t be too costly.
In the kitchen, fitting new worktops or painting kitchen cupboards can make the space look like new.
Redecorate any rooms that are looking tired, and reinstate period features in older properties to really add value. Finally, if you’re using any bedrooms or living areas for a playroom or home office, it’s a good idea to revert them back to their original purpose – the easier it is for purchasers to see what they’re buying, the better.
If all this sounds like a lot of work and you need to move quickly, it’s worth considering Part Exchange. Cala will provide a free, no-obligation valuation and pay up to 100% market value.
Some careful planning and action now will help you get ahead of the game and make sure you’re in the best position possible when it comes to making the move to your dream home in 2021.
Find your new home with Cala today.