The Bristol property market has gone from strength to strength in recent years. According to Hometrack, which measures the top 20 Cities in the UK, Bristol property prices grew by a staggering 14% in 2016.
While this has now fallen to an annual rate of 3.7%, it’s still a tough market for first time buyers. It’s difficult enough saving for a deposit and made even harder by house prices increasing at such a fast pace.
We asked Bristol mortgage broker Fox Davidson for their top 10 tips to help first time buyers get on the property market:
1.Ensure your credit file is in order. Ensuring you have good credit is paramount to securing the best rates of interest. Make sure payments are up to date and that you are within your overdraft and credit card limits.
2. Register for the electoral roll. This will help with your credit score and will also allow the lender to find you electronically, reducing the time it takes to process the mortgage application.
3. Affordability. All lenders now work on an affordability basis rather than an income multiple. Lenders assess income and expenditure to work out how much you can borrow. Use a broker who will find the lender that can lend you the amount you need.
4. Get your documents in order. Lenders need proof of ID, address and income plus 3 months bank statements.
5. Deposit. All lenders currently ask for a minimum of 5% deposit. This can be from your own savings or as a gift from family. The more deposit you can put down the less your repayments will be each month. The rate of interest will also get better for every 5% deposit you can put down.
6. Get your mortgage agreed in principle. Many estate agents will ask to see the agreement in principle when you make an offer on a property.
7. Meet your local Estate Agents. Meet your local agent and inform them of your property requirements. If they know you are looking they will keep you in their thoughts when new properties come to market.
8. Negotiate. As a first time-buyer, you are in a very good position as you are not part of a chain. Use this to help negotiate a good price for the property.
9. Build a Team of Experts. To ensure the transaction goes smoothly you should ensure you have a quality solicitor, surveyor and mortgage broker all working together to get you into the property as soon as possible. Personal recommendations or online reviews can help when choosing your team of property professionals.
10. Use an Independent Broker. A local mortgage broker can help you with all the above. An independent broker also has access to the whole of the market and will get you the best mortgage deal for your situation.
Fox Davidson are offering all applications made through Fox Davidson from now until the end of October the chance to win £500 of B&Q/John Lewis vouchers to help them kit out their new home and will choose one winner at random.