Your guide to buying a property in Leytonstone – or anywhere in the UK
Whether you’re a first-time buyer or you just need a little reminder of the steps to buying a house, our estate agents have put together a brief buyer’s guide to help you find the best property for you and what to expect throughout the process.
The first step to buying a house isn’t what you think...
Once you’ve decided it’s the right time to buy, we know your first instinct will be to start looking straight away – but steady on, there are some other things you’d be wise to do first! As estate agents, we’ve helped many people find their next home in Leytonstone and the East London area in general, but before we get to the exciting part of the viewings, we advise our clients to take these three essential steps first:
- Speak to your bank/mortgage advisor – to save yourself time and disappointment, it’s a good idea to get a handle on your finances first. Speak to your bank and/or a mortgage broker to find out how much you can borrow and how much of a deposit you’ll need (bear stamp duty in mind too if relevant).
- List your ‘must-haves’ – when you’re buying a house, you’ll probably find that you need to make some compromises somewhere along the line, but that’s not to say you should miss out on any elements that will make you truly happy in your new home. List all your ideal criteria (school catchment, transport links, outdoor space etc.) then highlight the items you simply cannot do without. This will help you narrow down your searches and more readily find your ideal property. You’ll end up with a list of ‘must haves’ and ‘would likes’ which you should provide to the estates agents you register with so that they have a better understanding of your needs.
- Register with your local estate agents – want to be the first to know when a new property comes on the market? When buyers register with us here at Trading Places, we send them all new instructions via email before they go live on online. So if you’re buying a house in the Leytonstone area or across East London, register with us here – or seek out agents in your area who offer a similar service.
10 key steps to buying a house
So you’ve chosen your area, you’ve set your budget and you’ve registered with your local estate agents. Now what? Here are the key stages you’ll go through during the house buying process.
- Set up property alerts – as well as registering with local agents, sign up to some property websites and set up alerts (where possible) so you get notified of new homes that meet your criteria as they come up for sale. For example, we post properties on popular sites like Rightmove, Zoopla, Prime Location and OnTheMarket.
- Arrange some viewings – you can often do an initial walk-through viewing digitally first, which is a great way of saving some legwork while you narrow them down! Try to view a number of properties that meet your must-have criteria and weigh up the pros and cons of each property carefully. Don’t rush, but equally ask your agent to give you the lowdown on the current market climate because location, season and other factors can influence activity and timings.
- Make an offer – found the house you want to buy? It’s time to make an offer. This may be the full asking price, or you may want to offer a reduced amount in order to start negotiations.
- House buyer’s survey – depending on the type of property you’re buying it can pay to invest in a full property survey so that any potential issues can be highlighted. This can save you buying into a money pit and if any unexpected works need doing to bring the property up to scratch, you can adjust your budget and renegotiate on the sale price.
- Offer accepted? Let’s talk mortgages – unless you’re a cash buyer, this is the stage where you engage your mortgage broker to start the wheels in motion. You’ve probably already got a mortgage in principle, now it’s time to cash in that promise. They’ll arrange a valuation of the property and start moving the purchase forward.
- Get a conveyancer/solicitor - in order to deal with all the legalities surrounding a house purchase, you’ll need a professional to help deal with contracts, deeds, terms, transfer of funds and completion.
- Keep talking to your estate agent – your agent will help with anything that falls outside of the financial or legal aspects of buying a house, such as managing any transaction chains and dealing with any other agents involved.
- Exchange of contracts – once all the groundwork has been done, this is the point where you pay your deposit and exchange contracts with the seller on the agreed terms. After this has been done, neither party can back out of the deal without a financial penalty (as per your contract).
- Plan your move – while the final bits and pieces are put into place in the background, you can now start to pack, book your removals van/company and get excited about the big move! Remember to arrange a postal redirection service and change your details with your utility and service providers etc.
- Happy new home! Completion – this is the point where your conveyancer sends the funds over to the seller’s representative. Once they can see the money in their account, they’ll call you to arrange to collect the keys to your new home!
Why choose us for your house buying journey?
If you’re looking to buy a house in Leytonstone or the East London area, the team at Trading Places are here to help – and without blowing our own trumpets, we think we have a bit of an edge over other local estate agents. Here’s why...
- Husband and wife team with 50 years of combined experience in buying and selling propert
- Genuine locals – we live in and LOVE Leytonstone, we play an active part in the local community and can give you genuine, firsthand insight into neighbourhoods, amenities, things to do and, of course, properties!
- We’re supported by a team of local expert estate agents and office staff who also happen to be our family and friends – and they all share our strong values and dedication to providing the best possible service every time.
- We have many accreditations and professional memberships under our belts:
- The Guild’s member for E11
- The Property Ombudsman
- Propertymark ARLA
- Propertymark NAEA
- We’re also award winners! Over the years we’ve been the proud recipients of accolades from:
- The Best Estate Agents Guide
- The British Property Awards
- Three Best Rated Agent
- Tracker (no longer operating)
We’re always here to assist you through the steps of buying a house or to offer any advice you require – just get in touch and we’ll be delighted to help!