What Prospective Homeowners in Plymouth Should Know Before They Buy

The Plymouth property market is about to grow in a big way. The council has confirmed that it will allocate £15.4 million to build 5,000 new homes over the next five years. Plymouth City Council would like to offer more affordable housing to the people of Plymouth, also giving them a high standard of living with things like economic heating systems.

While many have praised these plans, there's a long way to go until those homes are built. Figures put together by Data Plymouth reveal that the average house price in the area is £176,860, which is likely why our area has a lower rate of home-ownership at 59.5% compared to the regional rate of 68%. This means that those looking to purchase a home in Plymouth before these new houses are built have quite a bit to think about.

What Can You Afford?

House prices in Plymouth are expensive, and so it may be best to start by asking what your budget will allow. Using an online calculator like Trussle's can help you answer "what mortgage can I afford?" From then, you'll know what to look for, such as whether you'll have to scrap plans for a guest bedroom as you choose a home with fewer rooms, or opt for a more affordable home without a garden that is in walking distance to an allotment. It's up to you which compromise(s) you'll be willing to make, but keeping up to speed with mortgage rates and running costs will allow you to make informed decisions.

You should also ask what you can afford when it comes to the bills. A larger home is going to be more expensive to heat, and a home that is further out of town could mean that you pay more in travel costs as you get to work - be it by car or bus.

Is the Home Leasehold or Freehold?

When going househunting, you'll often see that houses are listed as leasehold or freehold. However, if you're a first-time buyer, you probably won't know exactly what this means. The short answer is that with a leasehold, you aren't buying the land when you buy a home; you're only leasing it. Freehold means that you own the house and the land it's built on.

In a leasehold property, you may have to pay ground rent and you may have to contact the building manager if you'd like to make major changes to the property. So that conservatory you'd talked about may not happen if the landlord doesn't approve it. This is not a dealbreaker for some but a major obstacle for others, so it's one more consideration to keep in mind.

What Would You Like From Your House?

When you start going on viewings, take a list. There are so many things to look at when buying property, such as whether there are any cracks or tilts, if water damage has been painted over, and whether the photography tricks used in the shooting of the video and images intend to hide other issues.

By not asking these questions or looking at these things, you may have to pay more to fix them once you've bought the house. You may also find that the house you've bought isn't so great. Being proactive, asking questions, doing your research and getting help from experts will ensure you've made the right decision.