Buying a house is a dream for many of us. At the moment the real estate market is favorable, thanks to the low property prices and the ease with which banks grant mortgages. But is all that glitters gold?
Buying a property is a delicate matter, which must be addressed and evaluated carefully: because if it is true that it could represent the crowning of a dream – who has never fantasized about the house of their dreams? – it is also true there are some tricks to prevent the experience from turning into a nightmare. In short, a home is forever (or almost!) And no one would want to find a rip-off on their hands.
So, we have decided to inform us and compile for you a small and practical handbook of advice to follow in order not to end up in bad situations. We hope it will help you, and we like to think that some of you will find your perfect home thanks to our advice!
Practical Handbook of Advices
1) Don’t fall in love with a house at first sight
Perhaps the most difficult of all advice, which is why we decided to put it first. Maybe you’ve already visited dozens of houses and then suddenly she comes, and everything seems perfect. No, we are not talking about the girl to marry, but about that house that moves something in you, in which you imagine yourself in the next twenty years. That looks like the house of your dreams, so you have to be much more careful: always think twice, evaluate the pros and cons. Come back to visit it several times, perhaps accompanied by someone else and at different times of the day: in short, look at it from multiple angles.
2) Check the real state of the property. Always.
Ok, it looks like her, the house you’ve been waiting for. Now comes the time to check everything thoroughly. There are many things to consider: start with what you can see (and ask for) immediately. In what condition are the fixtures? When did the building and the last renovation date? Can you see damp spots on the walls? How is it positioned with respect to the rising and setting of the sun? It’s bright? What is the condition of the floors and services in? In short, do not leave out anything, not even the most insignificant: you could save yourself a lot of trouble later.
3) Plants in accordance with standards and energy certifications. Security is important
The mandatory EPC energy certification was recently introduced. What is it for? To determine the energy efficiency of the building: in practice it allows you to understand if your future home will make you spend hundreds of euros on heating in winter or air conditioning in summer. But be careful: even if the energy certification is low, it does not mean that it cannot be improved. Changing the fixtures, making an external coat, changing the boiler in favor of a more modern and efficient system, are all interventions that will save you over time.
Another very important aspect is to verify that the systems are up to standard : especially for the purchase of houses over ten years old, it is essential to know the date of the last revision and if any particular changes have been made.
4) Extraordinary maintenance: we avoid nasty surprises
Make sure that there are no extraordinary maintenance to be done (such as refurbishing the roof) since these represent a huge cost. If they are present, it can become a good leverage for price bargaining. In the case of buying an apartment in a condominium, make sure if the extraordinary expenses have already been approved (in which case they are due to the seller) or are planned for the future.
5) Perfect home. And in twenty years?
This brings us to the end of our advice. You have visited the house, you have examined it, analyzed it. You have evaluated the pros and cons: the decision is now made. Ask you one final question: is it the house you were looking for, but will it still be in twenty years? Often buyers tend to think about the immediate and not project their choices into the future. For example, a multi-level home might look attractive today, but when will there be small children? Or when you are older and stairs could be a problem? This is just a case, and each of us has needs that evolve over time. Take them into consideration.