Questions to ask the estate agent on a house-viewing
When viewing a serious contender for a potential future home, getting swept up in the excitement of finding your dream property is almost guaranteed, but could possibly mean you don’t ask the essential questions you need answers to.
At Tod Anstee Hancock, we understand there are many different aspects to manage during the home buying process and it is important that you benefit from your estate agent’s knowledge of the property.
Therefore, in our latest blog we have gathered some key questions to ask your estate agent whilst viewing a home for sale.
Questions to ask at a house viewing
Buying a property is a huge investment and asking the right questions could make the difference between buying your perfect home or finding yourself stuck with a house you regret buying.
So, take advantage of your estate agent by asking these make or break questions.
Why is the owner selling?
There are many reasons why a property owner could be selling their home. For example, they may be moving to a new area for work, need more space for a growing family or even down-sizing in retirement. Regardless of the reason, this can be one of the most important questions to ask, as it can help you gauge the motivations of the vendor and gain a better understanding of the property’s features.
Your estate agent will be more than happy to answer why in most cases, as the seller may be looking for a quick sale. You can also ask whether they have already identified a property to move in to, as this could give you some indication of how quickly they’re looking to sell, and how soon you can move in.
What is included in the sale?
Whilst you are viewing your potential future home, make sure you ask exactly what is included (and excluded) in the sale. Ask the estate agent if there is any additional land included in the price or if the seller will be leaving anything behind in the way of fixtures and fittings. This could be anything from a garden shed to curtains. Does the property have off-street parking, or do you need a residential parking permit?
Every property is different, so ensure you gather all the information from the estate agent during your viewing.
Has the house had any work done?
Whilst a structural survey on the property you’re interested in is recommended, it is worth asking your estate agent if any recent work has been completed on the house too.
This can uncover any underlying issues, as you can ask about planning permission and even the decorating. Are there any reasons this work was done? Many home sellers will refresh the décor in advance of selling, in order to make the house look as appealing as possible.
Have there been any major works to plumbing and electrics?
Beyond the aesthetic of the property, plumbing and electricals are an integral part of the house. It’s important to ask if any major repairs or improvements have been made, including any alterations made to the boiler or additions to electrical outlets such as the water pressure or heating. Do take full advantage of your estate agent’s knowledge of the property.
How much are the bills?
Whilst utility bills and council tax may not seem like a priority when deciding to invest in a property, they are recurring expenses you will need to budget for in future. Ask the estate agent about the property’s utility bills, so you can assess how much you will be spending. Look at the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) to give you an indication of heating costs.
Knowing the council tax band the property falls under will also allow you work out your budget and see how much you’ll have left over.
Lastly, if the property happens to be a leasehold property, ask the estate agent about service charges and ground rent.
What is the local neighbourhood like?
Buying a new home isn’t all about the house itself, but the local area you’ll be living in. Neighbours and local amenities can play a big part in the decision to move, so if the area is new to you, quiz your estate agent on the surroundings, as they are likely to have a detailed knowledge about the local community. What are the schools like? How good are transport links? Where is the nearest petrol station and shop?
Whilst it is a good idea to ask your estate agent these questions, take the opportunity to go for a walk or drive around the area yourself at different times of day to assess traffic levels and whether there is a good community feel.
Frequently cited as a major requirement of home seekers in research studies, do check that the broadband strength reflects your internet usage needs, especially if you have a house full of teenagers or if you intend to work from home.
Present yourself as an attractive buyer
The estate agent is not only looking to achieve the best price for the vendor but also looking for the best qualified purchaser. So, if you are in a good buying position with finances in place and not in a chain, then make sure you communicate this to the estate agent during the viewing.
Find a trusted estate agent at Tod Anstee Hancock
The estate agents at Tod Anstee Hancock are here to assist you throughout your house viewing process, answering any queries you may have so you can secure your dream West Sussex home.
With years of expertise throughout the area, our agents provide each client with all the vital information they require to make a decision on a home purchase.
If you’re looking to arrange a house viewing at one of our houses for sale, get in touch with our specialist property consultants today. Simply call us on 01243 523723.
Don’t worry if you can’t contact us over the phone right now, you can request for us to call you at a more convenient time by completing our quick and simple online enquiry form.
Trust one of the most experienced estate agents in West Sussex.