The first homeowners guide

The first homeowners guide

Private Property South Africa
Private Property Reporter

This article is sponsored by 1st for women

There are few things as exciting (or as terrifying) as buying your very first home! But don’t panic, we’ve got you covered with our handy guideline to some of the basic things you need to know about buying a home – and some things you might not have thought of.

Make sure you’re aware of all the costs

Unfortunately buying a house typically costs a lot more than most people expect. Firstly, there’s the actual cost of the house and then there are transfer fees, lawyer fees, the cost of a rate clearance certificate, Buildings Insurance… all of which can add up – fast. So make sure that when you’re organising your finances for your new home, you budget for all these extras too.

Check out the neighbourhood

People often say it’s better to spend more money on a smaller house in a really good neighbourhood, than a more affordable, larger house somewhere less desirable. The reason being is that your home will probably be the biggest asset you own, so you’ll want to make sure that nothing might compromise its value in the future. In the same vein, be sure to check with town planning about any future developments in the area that could also potentially affect the value of your home.

Always think ahead

It is always a good idea to think ahead when buying a home. For instance, if you want to have kids, it’s a good idea to consider buying a home in an area where there are good schools and parks. Plus, you should also take into account your work commute – and consider the distance you’ll travel every day and the related travel costs.

Bring in the experts

You might have fallen in love with your dream home at first sight, but you still need to make sure that there won’t be any nasty surprises before you sign on the dotted line. You always need to check for things like damp, cracks, or electrical issues. Bring in someone to inspect and sign off on your new place before you do. Plus, always ask the owners about previous repairs and renovations, so you’ll know what to take a deeper look at.

Be sure to check the little things

When looking around a potential new home, don’t forget about the smaller details. Check the water pressure in the taps and showers, make sure your phone gets a good signal, and definitely ask about the neighbours. These are little things that could turn into bigger problems later on!

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