The Process Behind Buying A New Build Home
Buying a new build home is a lot easier than you may think. This article will outline the main steps concerned with the process, as well as advice on what to do and who to talk to in each stage along the way.
Step 1: The Search
Once you have decided that a new build home is for you, the search for your dream home begins. If you are reading this, then step 1 has likely already begun! Finding your new home will take time, so take your time scouting out your options, don’t rush into anything. This is going to be a purchase you will live with for years (pardon the pun).
Where to look for a new build home will be one of the first things on your mind. Once you start looking, you’ll find that there are more sources for this information than you think. You can get inspiration from friends and family, social media, newsletters, signage you see along the road, Google, Rightmove or other property portals, estate agent websites… the list goes on.
The internet is a great starting point to freely view what your options are online. The websites of developers are especially important to visit, you can gauge a lot about a company from their website, including customer testimonials, their history, and images of their developments. Due to the pandemic a lot of developers also now offer virtual tours of their show homes, which can be viewed on their website. See an example of a virtual tour of our Churchfields development here!
Step 2: Enquiring
If you come across a new build home which catches your eye, we recommend enquiring to the developer or estate agents as soon as you are ready, the sooner the better. This will allow you to find out more information from the home provider directly and ask them any questions you have which are not answered on their website.
Even if you have a few options and you aren’t 100% sure which avenue to go down, getting in touch with the developer will give you a greater insight to help you decide. You can find out about the company history, the service you can expect, and more details about the homes, which will all help you make a more informed decision.
To get in touch with Clarendon Homes about our selection of luxury new build homes, contact us today.
Step 3: Book A Viewing
This step may not always be applicable because many home developers allow for reservations off-plan, which means the properties have not yet been fully constructed. This type of reservation has its own advantages which will be discussed in step 5.
On the other hand, if the properties are complete and there is a show home available for viewing, why not book an appointment to go down and have a look? Seeing a new build home in person offers a vastly different experience to viewing it on a screen. You get to see the quality of finish up close, you can ask questions in person about the home, and you can get a feel for the surrounding area, which is particularly useful if you are looking to relocate.
If you are looking for an assisted living retirement home, our Cobnut Park development has a show home coming soon! Register your interest today, viewings by appointment only.
Step 4: Speak to a Mortgage Advisor
It is always worth consulting a mortgage adviser about your circumstances, to find out what you can afford, the best mortgage offers available etc. They have an in-depth knowledge of the market and will lay out your options. They will also be able to tell you about government schemes such as Help to Buy, a type of loan intended to help first time homebuyers purchase a new-build property.
Before you move on to the next stage in the process, you should look to have agreed a mortgage in principle (a statement from a lender saying they’ll lend a certain amount to you before you’ve finalised the purchase of your home). Speaking to a mortgage advisor as part of step 1 is a good idea if you are a first-time buyer, so you can know how much you can get a mortgage for.
Step 5: Making an Offer
Once you have settled on a property which you would like to move forward with, it is time to make an offer. Prices will often either be stated outright or will be “POA” (Price on Application), meaning you need to contact the provider to find out more information on the price.
Making an offer early when a development is still in construction can bring benefits from being off-plan. With some builders, such as Clarendon Homes, reserving off-plan will often bring privileges such as being able to choose certain finishes. This will allow you to have a more bespoke customer experience. Sometimes developers will accept an offer, other times they will only accept the asking price. This can depend on a few factors, such as the stage of the development build and how many plots are left.
Step 6: Reservation
Once you’ve found a home you’re happy with, you have sorted out your finances and had your offer accepted, you can secure the property by paying the developer a reservation fee.
This fee can range from £500 to £5,000 depending on the property price and whether you are using Help to Buy and will reserve the home for a 28-day period or longer. During this time, the developer will expect you to instruct solicitors and exchange contracts. Once the purchase completes, the developer will deduct the reservation fee from the final price. Failing to exchange contracts in those 28 days, or the purchase falling through completely, means you may forfeit your reservation fee. So, it’s vital to have your mortgage agreed in principle as well as having solicitors lined up before you pay to reserve your home.
Step 7: Exchange Contracts and Receive a Move In Date
During the exchange process, your conveyancer solicitor will check:
- The terms of the contract and draft transfer/lease
- The title to the property
- The planning documents
- Any other relevant documentation
They will also clarify information with the developer’s solicitor and ask you to sign the paperwork. Don’t let the legal side of things intimidate you, the selling estate agent and both solicitors will help you through the process. At this point a completion (move in) date will be agreed.
Step 8: Complete the Legal Process and Move Into The Property!
Once you’ve crossed all the t’s, dotted all the i’s, and your money has reached the developer, you’ll be ready to move in! Your developer will go over some final pointers with you and will often provide a home user guide (which is essentially a manual for homeowners). Once your keys have been handed to you, you’ve done it! Your journey as a new build homeowner is far from over though, there will still be costs to consider and things to buy. But when you’re doing this in the comfort of your new home, rest assured it feels a whole lot nicer.
Got any questions or feedback on the blog? Or maybe a topic you would like to be covered in a future blog? Email firstname.lastname@example.org today, I would love to hear from you!