As with most things these days, if you're unsure about how to navigate the constantly shifting landscape of purchasing a property, your first port of call is likely to be the internet.
Buying (and selling) a house can be stressful and can raise a lot of questions. So, in order to assist with the buying process, regulated property buyers at GoodMove have revealed the most googled property questions and used their expertise to answer them.
With average house prices now standing at an average of £270,027 there is no wonder that people are turning to Google to answer their burning property questions.
Can you sell property after probate?
400% increase in searches
Probate is the process of dealing with somebody’s assets after they die. If you’ve been named as the executor of the property, you’re not tied to any specific time restrictions when it comes to selling property after probate. However, the courts will determine an appropriate deadline to complete the probate house sale process.
You might feel that it’s important to complete a house sale quickly, but there are numerous factors that can delay the process. While it’s possible to put the house on the market and even accept an offer, at your own pace, it’s impossible to exchange contracts and complete a sale before executor of property status is confirmed.
1. What property can I afford?
100% increase in searches
Getting onto the property -ladder in today’s economy is a massive commitment, so it’s important to assess whether you have the finances to make such a big investment right now.
Preparation is essential in this respect, when entering the property market buyers should know exactly what they want and what to expect. Make sure you consider all financial commitments when deciding on an appropriate deposit, and mortgage payments.
2. Are property prices going down?
75% increase in searches
2021 has been an especially volatile year for the property market – growing demand from lockdown savers coupled with fewer houses going up on the market had led to an upset equilibrium between supply and demand. However, heading into the new year buyers can expect a gradual decline in property prices.
As we head into the Christmas period there is less property going up on the market, as people are reluctant to move over the festive period. Therefore, buyers should hold off until early in the new year as supply begins to level off with demand.
3. How do property auctions work?
68% increase in searches
Auctioning is the process of buying and selling goods, or services, by offering them for bidding. Bids are taken, and the items are sold to whoever bids the highest amount. This can be a great way to receive the best deal on your property as interest fuels demand.
At an auction, interested buyers will bid for your property and the highest bid wins the auction. The property is deemed under offer when the hammer strikes, and the winning bidder is obligated to purchase the property by putting a 10% deposit down to secure the sale. The sale will then be completed within a month when the remaining 90% of the funds are transferred.
4. How is a property valuation done?
49% increase in searches
A property valuation is an assessment of your property's value, based on the location, condition and multiple other factors. Your valuation will be carried out in person by a professional surveyor who will take notes and photographs, and then send you a valuation report.
5. What should I include in my property viewing checklist?
27% increase in searches
When viewing a property, it’s easy to get sucked in by the fantasy of your dream home. However, to prevent any future expensive regrets it’s important to have a viewing checklist ready to go.
Firstly, it’s important to ask questions on how long the house has been on the market, how much interest there has been on the property and how long the owners have lived there. This is a good indication of any property red flags, as lack of interest can suggest problems within the area or the property itself.
During the house viewing, make sure you ask questions about the neighbourhood, the average asking prices nearby and transport links. If you are planning on raising a family, it is also recommended you ask about the quality of the schools in the area.
6. Where do property taxes go?
26% increase in searches
In the UK there are two main property taxes – Stamp Duty Land Tax and Council Tax. As with all taxes, these are used to fund government programmes and activities. Stamp Duty Land Tax is applied if you buy property over a certain threshold in England and Northern Ireland. This applies to most sales and transfers of land or property, with the threshold being £125,000 for residential properties and £150,000 for non-residential land and properties.
The other form of UK property tax is Council Tax. This local municipality tax is stepped or banded just like income tax. Each municipality assesses the properties in their jurisdiction annually and determines applicable taxes based on the assessed value.