Looking to buy a property? Make sure you visit your desired place during different times of the day, and don’t be tempted to act in haste after a quick first viewing.
The property market is currently busy, with more buyers than properties, and this might tempt you to rush into making a purchase. Before you do, ensure your potential new home ticks all the boxes, and you don’t end up suffering from buyer’s remorse. Otherwise, you could end up as another statistic.
Half of people who bought a home during the coronavirus pandemic regret how much they paid, according to a survey published last year by Aviva. The insurer spoke to 2200 homeowners, including 500 people who had bought a property between March 2020 and June 2021. What’s more, they found that nine out of ten buyers who bought during the pandemic found problems after moving in.
Although it may be tempting to rush in when you’ve found what looks like a great property, make sure you’ve seen it more than once or at least visited the area several times. This could reveal a lot about the area. By all means, be swift and efficient, as properties are in high demand, but make sure you’ve also done your homework.
View the road at different times
Saturday tends to be the most popular day to view properties, usually because most people are off work and have more time to spare. However, it’s advisable to visit the street where you hope to buy during the week and at different times, so that you can tell how busy it is at various times of the day. You may find that your desired new home is in a much busier area than you’d anticipated.
Our content manager Christina Neal once bought a property in what she thought was a relatively peaceful area. She viewed the property in the middle of the day when it was quiet. Unfortunately, she was in for a shock when she moved in. A school was just around the corner, and every morning at 8.30am, her drive was blocked by mums dropping their kids at school. She couldn’t get her car out without asking someone else to move their vehicle.
Daytime noise is another consideration, especially if you work from home or do shift work and need to sleep during the day. Find out if there is building work going on in the area before you commit to purchasing a property.
If there are nearby renovations going on or new homes being built, you’ll have to put up with persistent drilling and banging as well as the inconvenience of large vehicles driving up your street. If it’s major building work, this type of noise could go on for many months. If you’re commuting to work each day, daytime construction work may not be an issue as you may miss most of the noise, but if you work from home, it could drive you to despair.
It’s also worth visiting the road where you intend to live in the evenings when residents are likely to be home from work. If you are going to be relying on street parking, you may find the road is very busy, and parking is an issue, whereas, during the day, it may be quiet. If, however, you visit the road during the evening and there’s plenty of parking, you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing you’ll be able to park your car easily.
You might also want to see how busy the area is in the evening. Are there many people passing through the street, and if so, are they noisy? If you’re buying a property on a road near a busy pub or restaurant, noise is to be expected. Bear in mind that some venues may also have live music at weekends, which could be loud and not necessarily to your taste.
Living near a shopping mall may sound convenient, but this can cause added congestion, especially at key times of the year. Thurrock in Essex used to be a fairly quiet area until Lakeside Shopping Centre was built. Naturally, this generated a lot more local traffic, especially at weekends and even later in the evenings, as the centre often had late opening hours. In addition, during the two months leading up to Christmas, shoppers flooded the mall, and local streets were packed with cars.
While you may have found your dream home, make sure you have done your research and scoped out the area carefully. It will be worth the effort and could just save you a lot of hassle in the long run.