If you've rented or bought before, you might think you are something of an expert when it comes to viewing new flats but it is super easy to get swept up in the moment and allow your brain to make an emotionally-driven decision rather than a practical one. Luckily for you, we are here to stop you from doing that and ending up with a real lemon!
We have created a checklist of things that you must consider before committing to a new flat and, while they might seem like common sense, you can easily find yourself losing control just because there is a Juliet balcony! Make a note of these tips and you will be sure to choose the perfect flat for you!
When it comes to flat basics, this has to be the number one consideration; how big is it? If you are hoping that this is the last flat that you will ever move into, you need to be sure that it is large enough for any future aspirations, such as children or working from home.
This beautiful space, from Catarina Batista, is stunning, no doubt, but would you be able to see past the styling to imagine it being big enough for you in five or even 10 years? Really make sure you have your life plan in mind when you view!
Naturally, there will be some wiggle room with any flat you view and you would be able to change up the position of certain rooms and items, but be sure to consider the layout as it stands. If it were to be too expensive or complicated to shake up the space, would you be happy keeping it as it is?
The layout of a property really does come under the banner of flat basics, so if you hate where the kitchen is or find the bathroom far too small, you need to think about the cost to change that up as it could easily max out your budget.
Now we are getting to the nitty gritty of flat basics! While it might be tempting to take a look at some properties that are just outside of your budget, you really need to consider value for money. Does the area, size and layout of the flat warrant the price tag?
If you view something that you love, but it turns out to be a fixer-upper, you will need to factor that into your offer and we always think it's best to go in as low as you dare! If basic amenities need replacing, such as the kitchen or bathroom, this will be even more pertinent, as you won't be able to live in the property while you renovate! Never forget that the price tag is not the only cost that you will have to cover!
We aren't afraid of a little DIY and we know that you aren't either, but needing to give a new flat a coat of paint and having to have the whole thing re-plastered are two very different things! Try not to get hung up on décor that you don't like, as that can be easily and cost-effectively changed, but look beyond and try to get a feel for the actual condition of the flat.
Can you see any damp anywhere? Are the floorboards in tact (left up the carpet!)? These are all things that could be costly to sort out and once you sign a contract and have the keys, it is up to you!
We know that it's difficult to not get caught up in the excitement of potentially finding yourself a new home and you should enjoy the process, but always think about proximity to locations that you visit regularly, such as friend's houses, parents, schools if you have children and your workplace. The last thing you want to do is buy an flat that seems like great value, only to have to spend two hours a day and a lot of money getting to work!
Flat basics, such as distance from frequently visited locations, are easy to forget in the heat of the moment when you are falling in love with a property, but if you can keep your sensible head on, you will be able to find something perfectly positioned and dreamy!
If you are a pet owner and you are looking for a new home, you will absolutely have to take them into consideration, regardless of whether you are buying or renting!
If you are renting, your landlord would need to give you written permission to keep animals and if you are buying, you need to think about how safe the location would be, if there is a park nearby and things such as that. Don't forget that this will be your furry friends' new home too, so it has to be suitable for them!
For more flat viewing tips, take a look at this Ideabook: Useful Tips For Viewing An Apartment. Commit these to memory and you won't go wrong!