Is the house looking straight and solid? The seller assumes the buyer will get a mortgage. Is the loft insulated? However, it's not always easy to know what questions to ask. Add your own questions to the list as needed, and never hold back from asking your realtor about everything you want to know—it’s what they’re there for! Checking how much a property last sold for may be misleading as to its current value if, for example, $1 million worth of rebuilding work has been done in the interim. ), 39. Be sure to ask. No home is perfect beneath the surface, and few know this better than your real estate agent. And to get all 30 questions, enter your name below to download the first time home buying checklist. The last thing you want is to buy a house next to a registered two doors down. Okay, the first question you need to ask yourself is: How much house can I afford? Ask to see the boiler – how old is it? Some will be suggested by the information you already have about the … (Useful to know for figuring out whether there may be lead paint, asbestos or other banned materials used in its construction. What is the position of the sellers? Posts may contain affiliate links, however, all my views remain impartial. And how long has the home been on the market? If it’s thatched, when is the next re-thatching due? Is there any plant life growing in it, or does it need any repair work? If, for example, they’ve already bought another home and are looking to move soon, and need to the money for their own house sale to pay for their purchase, then you’ll know you have more negotiating power. “I always ask the agent’s opinion,” he said. If you’re a first-time house buyer, you might be excited about making your big purchase, but you might feel a bit overwhelmed too. 14. You need to ask lots of questions to help you negotiate with the seller for a good price. This one is pretty important. Any nuisances or hazards (traffic congestion, noise, crime, … Is there any sound proofing in the house? What condition is the roof in – does it sag, are there any missing tiles or is there evidence of damage? To weed out the duds from the diamonds, here are 15 questions to ask when buying a house. “Sometimes an agent will volunteer that information to motivate the purchaser, and they might not say otherwise. Knowledge is power and asking your estate agent the right questions could save you a great deal of money and heartache in the long run.. 1. 6. Having such information can put you in a much stronger position when trying to negotiate a lower price on a property. It’s also good to find out how motivated a vendor is to sell. 31. Do the ground floor windows have locks, and are any of the keys missing? Through your agent, try to ensure the sellers have an inventory that sets out their... 3. 2. 38. What are your total costs? Are there, or have there been, any boundary disputes with neighbours? 1. So yep, ask the right questions and be forearmed before you buy, and it can work out well for you! “Either way, that can be valuable,” says Matthew Smythe of Belle Property Neutral Bay. Here are the questions to ask. 15. And if you want to ease the process while also maximizing profits, then being prepared is key. 12. These are six key questions to ask the agent which can reveal more about a property than you might think. We need a break just thinking about all the questions to ask when buying a house. How many days has the house been on the market? Are there working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms? 30. 11. Who am I speaking with? Open inspections can also add to the stress as they can often be intimidating; the real estate agents are rushed and there are throngs of buyers you must contend with. Ask to see the fuse board – is the wiring up to date? Look for cracks, but also look for evidence of cracks being covered up by wallpaper that doesn’t look right or paint applied over filler). If they are in a... 2. (Can you see it, smell it, or is there a smell of fresh paint that could be a trick to... 2. Usually the person buying the house wants to get the legal side of things moving as quickly as possible, in order to move in as soon as they can. “And it makes you realise, all over again, how important good neighbours are to the quality of your life. For a full list of questions to ask the estate agent, visit our guide to making an offer on a property. 40. Buying a house can be daunting at the best of times. What did they pay for the home? Are all of the lights working? Your real estate agent can help you understand the process. By continuing to browse the site, you are agreeing to our. 4 min read After saving for a deposit, spending weekends running high and low to open house after open house you’ve finally done it, you’ve found the home of your dreams.. Of course, every buyer wants to know how much their property might sell for, but what about how much you’re forking out to get the deal done? Are there any public rights of way passing through the property? When I was viewing houses to buy, I was worried about getting it wrong – not asking the right questions, or missing something important. Buying a house is exciting. Phillips Pantzer Donnelley principal May Anne Cronin just sold her next-door neighbour’s house and the whole neighbourhood turned out for the farewell drinks. Use this app to track the sun’s movement over the property without even viewing it! “It’s always worth having the conversation,” he says. When you view a house, always go prepared with a list of questions to ask the estate agent. Are there any trees growing within 5 metres of the property? The questions to ask when buying a new home are centered on getting you as much information as possible so that you can make an informed decision on whether or not to move forward. If so, when was it done? Some may not be relevant to your house, but hopefully there will be enough to make you feel more confident about the viewing process. If you are buying or selling a property, you want to make sure your conveyancing solicitor can provide what you need. 1. 7. Will any of the glazing need to be replaced? I’m glad the list is helpful . 19. Timing your sale 1. So, here are some of the best questions to ask the seller when buying a house: Questions About The Sellers Position: First up, it’s always good to find out as much as you can about why the vendors are selling up. What type of gas and electricity meters are there installed – are they credit meters, prepayment (coin or key) meters, standard or smart meters? (Have a look at the finished product here.) What’s included in the sale? When is the best time of year to sell a house? Is there any asbestos in the property, or has there ever been an asbestos survey carried out? It means that when you buy the home, you will fully own and be responsible for the solar panels. Many years ago when I was helping my daughter purchase a unit in Adelaide I was asked to leave by the attending agent because I was being so thorough, opening cupboard doors, checking water pressure, knocking on shower tiles to discover hollow sound and water damage, the other people inspecting property had started following me around, so you can imagine agent was not impressed, we did not buy that property, Your email address will not be published. If so, where is it and what condition is it in? Some of the questions will let you know whether to walk away, and some will let you know how much money you will need to spend to get the house up to scratch. What’s the reason for the sale? The easiest case is when the homeowner paid cash for the solar panels. And you won't learn anything. If you know in advance that the home has structural issues or … If they used a loan, they may have an outstanding balance and still be paying off the loan, even after selling the house. “Ask them to provide you with a recent sales report that shows other similar properties and what they sold for in recent times. Here is a checklist of questions to ask your realtor before making an offer to buy a house: Why is the seller is selling? Look for cracks, but also look for evidence of cracks being covered up by wallpaper... 4. What kind of drainage system does the property have – mains drainage or a septic tank? The Land Registry website will give you useful information. 37. This could either validate the price they’re asking – or show it up as completely unrealistic. I’m going to print this page out for reference , It really is overwhelming sometimes, isn’t it? Hey Claudia, thank you for your kind comment! “You want to make sure the house you are buying is fairly priced compared to the rest of the local market and you are not overp… 1. I like to call them by their name throughout the... What is the address of the house you want to sell? 36. Does the boiler use a water tank? Can I Pay Child Support Directly To My Child? 1. Who owns the property and what’s their story? Are you thinking of listing your house in the near future? As a general rule Australian properties usually sell up to 10% less than their original asking price. You’ll have plenty of questions to ask after you’re in the middle of the transaction, and it’s never too early to ask … So ask LOTS of questions so you can be as happy with the house over the long term as you are at first sight! We are currently hunting for our first home and ‘overwhelmed’ is definitely the word… it’s obviously the most money I’ve ever spent, so I’m petrified of making a mistake! Is there any evidence of damp? If so, who carried them out and did they provide a warranty? To take this list with you as a convenient, easy-to-use notebook to compare multiple house viewings, click here to buy my book, the Homebuyer’s Journal*! This is one of the major questions to ask when buying a house — and one of the questions that no one really wants to ask: Was someone murdered here? 32. Is there enough storage space for you? “You also need to make sure any work has been council-approved, and well done, and whether there are still any warranties [that are] valid,” she said. While you can ask the agent that, however, Bright says you never know if you’re going to receive a straight answer. He might give you this valuable information even before you make a deal. Key Takeaways Questions to ask a home seller include: Why are they selling? Are there any shared driveways or communal spaces? Condition. 18. You need to work out if you’ll be living with people like you, or whether they won’t suit you. 17. Checking for sex offenders in the area isn’t something I … When selling a house, it is normal for the new homeowners to get anything affixed to the walls, floors, or ceilings, unless otherwise specified. This website uses cookies. (Or close to the property?). I agree these questions are important especially when you are planning to buy a house. 26. How’s the broadband service in the area? What is included in the sale? 35. Finding the right home involves research, so you’ll need to ask the right questions. However, it never hurts to ask when viewing a home. 29. Of course, the agent may choose not to answer or, if a property is up for auction, say that they’re waiting to see what the market says, explains EPS Property Search director Patrick Bright. Here are some questions to ask. Thanks, Although I already knew to ask 2/3 of these questions or were not applicable, there were some important ones that I had not thought of, so thank you. Are the walls structurally sound? But make sure to independently verify that with the local council. What kind of roof does the property have? Your email address will not be published. 33. 3. 22. Try to find out how much others have paid to buy the freehold. Have there been any major works to the property? Which way does the garden face, and are there any parts of the garden that get no sunlight throughout the day? Residential agent Jason Smit from Brisbane’s Sparrow Real Estate says it’s important to find out exactly how much the whole process will cost, and not simply settle for the first quote an agent provides. If the house has a bay front and uPVC windows, are the window mullions load-bearing or has the load been left to rest on the replacement windows? A recent article on LANDTHINK entitled, “Top 20 Questions for Land Buyers” garnered a lot of attention and created quite a bit of controversy among LANDTHINK readers. Let me know what you think about this list, and add your suggested questions in the comments below. The selling agent is your key point of contact throughout the process, and may hold more information about the property than can be gleaned from the listing or an inspection. It may also be worth asking the agent if there are any development applications in the area that might affect the property, says Bradley, perhaps potentially blocking views or overshadowing. So I wrote up a list to take with us on our next viewing, and it really helped me to feel confident and assured… and we bought that house! Heartfelt thanks for taking the time to share! If you find a house you really want to purchase, then don’t be shy to ask your real estate agent whether the seller is ready to reduce the price. 28. If not, why not? And what’s included in the sale? . 9. Is there enough storage space for you? We need to know who we are speaking to. Unlike the seller, the estate agent is legally obliged to tell you if they know of any serious problems with the property. Were any extensions or other works carried out under the correct planning permissions? What goes on the street a various times (check in the morning, afternoon weekends)? Does the foundation looks solid and without repair? If leasehold, how long is left on the lease? “It’s great to hear which features they particularly loved, and understand the house even more. “It could give you confidence to make a good offer for the property, or convince you that you should walk away.”. What’s the reason for selling? Try viewing at different times to hear how much of the neighbours and/or street noise you can hear. This is one of the most important questions but many people don’t think to ask it, says Buyer’s Agent Stefan Miraglia, Director of IPC Property in Adelaide. Phew! “They tend to know the area well and how one suburb compares with the next, how this street is next to the others, and whether it’s in the best location for the price that’s being asked.”. Questions That Reveal Your Dream House 1. 23. What council tax band is the property in? window['fe-co-email-widget-fe-co-email-widget_1'] = {"position":"middle","hasSeparators":true,"theme":"domain"}; Agents, particularly if they’re local to the area, can be a veritable font of knowledge that’s very useful to tap into, believes Raine & Horne Petersham director Frederico Fraga-Matos. If you’re buying a house, one thing that can take up a few days or sometimes a few weeks is waiting on answers to enquiries that your solicitor has raised. Has the home been used as a drug house? I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. “For instance, if you’re a hipster, you don’t want to be surrounded by mums and dads and kids. You can also ask them how long the property's been on the market for and whether anyone's made an offer. How long have the sellers lived there? Q: How Long Have You Lived Here? Some states require home sellers to disclose these things while others don’t. It’s important to learn as much as you can about the house before you buy to avoid any surprises when you move in. What are the right questions for a buyer to ask when considering purchasing a piece of rural land for sale?It all depends on the objectives the buyer has in mind when making their purchase. “But you can always follow up by asking if they would accept a pre-auction offer.”. Thank you so much for this fabulous list! Price. So be sure to read PART 1 of questions to ask when buying a house. Homeowner paid for the panels: questions to ask. Why are you moving? Six questions you should ask a real estate agent when buying a home, Four ways to buy a home in an expensive suburb. Top 10 Questions to Ask your Real Estate Agent Questions to ask a real estate agent when buying property. Are there sex offenders in the neighborhood? In a seller’s market, it may be more important to act quickly and stick to the most essential questions. Has there ever been a fire or damage from a bad storm? The selling agent is your key point of contact throughout the process, and may hold more information about the property than can be gleaned from the listing or an inspection. Required fields are marked *. What type of fuel does the boiler run on – mains gas, oil, bottled gas, solid fuel? This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. What is the neighbourhood like, and are there any social problems to be aware of? When buying a home, it pays to approach the purchase with as much information as possible. What is included in the sale, and what isn’t? Prepare yourself with these 10 questions to ask your home seller. How old is the property? Is the guttering sound? What Is A W2? The Best UK Cashback Apps To Save Money On Supermarket Shopping, Cats And Affection Eating - What You Can Do. Popular Reads You need to find this out to have a better sense of its correct price, advises Finderskeepers property consultants’ Lisa Bradley. First, it’s important to get the reason why the homeowners are selling … The burden is generally on the real estate agent to keep their client, whether buyer or seller, fully informed and educated as to what’s happening. (Appliances, light fittings, soft furnishings.). This is a great question to help establish rapport between buyer and seller, and is also best asked near the end of the buying process. There are certain aspects of a property that can make it cheaper to buy, but at the same time, these features can hurt the value of your property when it comes time to sell. If they can’t give you a precise answer – preferably with documentation – get expert opinions. Of course, there are also times when you’ll be competing against other buyers to be the first in line to purchase a home. Take a look at the top 10 questions buyers should ask: 1. 18 questions to ask your estate agent that will save you a great deal of heartache and money in the long run. “How do you know whether it’s worth bidding on if you don’t know whether it’s within your budget?”, “When they finally tell you, respond with ‘How much? “It was lovely seeing all that neighbourliness,” she said. Top Tips – clever questions to ask the estate agent when buying Buying a home is a psychological game of poker, with very high stakes, and huge incentives to bluff and avoid inconvenient facts. When was it last serviced? But if you’re a parent, then you’ll want to know there are other kids around, that your kids will like the area, and that there’ll be willing childminders around!”. 5. It makes it a richer experience.”. Lastly, and somewhat cheekily, what’s the lowest price you can get this house for? (Can you see it, smell it, or is there a smell of fresh paint that could be a trick to cover up damp?). Is there any evidence of damp? 25. “What are the upfront costs, what are the costs if my property doesn’t sell, how negotiable is the agent on their commission fee and can they justify their commission f… Have a look at the finished product here. Make sure you ask yourself these 9 important questions before moving forward. 24. Is the property leasehold or freehold? However estate agents are legally bound to tell the truth, so you need to make sure you ask the right questions to find out what the real situation is. Does the property have any lead pipes fitted? These are six key questions to ask the agent which can reveal more about a property than you might think. If you don’t ask this question when buying a house, you might go with whatever number a … Two and a half years later, we sold it for £20,000 more than we had paid for it, with only about £2000 spent on refurbishment. 13. You can research the property’s history and location online, as well as look up crime statistics in the area. 20. I just discovered my list in an old handbag, so I decided to turn it into a post to help anyone else who might be worrying about what to look out for when viewing a house. What condition are the power sockets and switches in? You know you’re getting the building itself, but beyond that, it’s not always clear. Are the windows sound? Unless you’re paying cash, the sticker price of a house is not the actual amount you’ll... 2. Are the walls structurally sound? That can be very telling!”. Click to get this checklist as a househunting guidebook! Ask your Realtor, ask contractors, ask your home inspector. 34. Which brings me to my second point: always get a home inspection. This post contains affiliate links, marked by *. Learn how your comment data is processed. Are there any restrictive covenants applying to the property? But if you don’t ask questions or get your agent to clarify something you don’t understand, they’re not going to know you’re confused. Through asking questions you will get more information which will help you decide. Great blog by the way and thanks for sharing this useful information. Where is the disclosure statement? First, ask the seller. Selling a house is a big undertaking. 10 More Questions to Ask Before Buying a House . “You should question the agent on why they think the house is worth what they are selling it for,” Miraglia says. “That made the whole thing feel very satisfying to hear about past joys that had taken place there and how they felt about the property. !’ and then fall silent, and leave them to justify it. What’s my housing budget? 3. 3. What Kind of Questions Should I Ask Before Buying a Home? Best list so far, really helped with us asking the owner of the house we are buying! It is vital to know if the sellers are serious or toe-dippers. “With later purchases, I did, and sometimes the previous owners would even come around and reminisce about their time in the house,” he said. 8. It’s hard to analyze a deal when we... How many bedrooms, bathrooms does it have? Moreover, some of these questions are the kind that you can answer without having to do a viewing. (This happens a lot and looks like subsidence when the front of the house cannot support its own weight!). 1. 10. Navigating This Important Tax Form, 3 Things To Help You Stick To Your Savings Goal, The Best UK Refer A Friend Schemes & Referral Codes. Even if you’re buying the property as-is, you need to know what you’re getting yourself into. I also wanted to thank you – I have been looking at many similarly titled lists, but have found yours by far the most elaborate and helpful one. 27. The first time Ray White chief executive officer Brian White bought a home, he never thought to find out about the vendors, and regretted it many times afterwards. Is there adequate mobile reception indoors? The morning, afternoon weekends ) that can be valuable, ” she said ask contractors ask. 1. Who owns the property, you want to make sure to read PART 1 of questions ask. Sockets and switches in let me know what you can research the without... 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