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Top tips for first time buyers – Consider the additional expenses

First-time buyers may easily overlook additional purchasing costs when considering whether a property is within their budget. It is important to take note of the following points:

  1. The stamp duty threshold currently stands at £125, 000 (the Conservatives intend to increase this threshold to £250, 000). Stamp duty is charged at 1% or more of the property price for properties above this threshold.
  2. Does the property you are buying have the benefit of a Home Information Pack containing valid searches? If not, you will have to pay for extra searches. The basic property searches will usually cost you around £250.
  3. Any mortgage lender will request a valuation of your new property to check that it is worth the money you are borrowing. This basic mortgage valuation will cost approximately £250. 00.
  4. You need to consider any legal work costs. It is likely that your conveyancing solicitor will request payment for conveyancing at the end of the transaction. Be sure that your solicitor has provided a detailed breakdown of all extra fees relevant to your transaction.
  5. Identify which Council Tax band the property falls within as you will begin paying this as soon as you take possession of your property.
  6. Calculate costs of your removal van & packers.
  7. Be sure of expenses once you are in the property. These include such items as buildings and contents insurance, mortgage payment protections plans, water/gas/electricity rates, furniture and decorating.
  8. If buying a leasehold property, take into account the annual service charge and ground rent. In a leasehold HIP you can easily see the service charge and ground rent costs in the Property Information Questionnaire


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