With residential property prices across parts of the UK now well above their 2008 peak, many people have been forced to widen their search for a home in other areas where home prices are more affordable.
If you, like many house hunters across the country, are thinking of moving somewhere new, here are some of the things that you may care to consider to make sure that you are buying property in the right location.
Are the local properties rundown and poorly maintained or are they well presented with well-preserved gardens and nice cars parked outside?
Sought-after building styles, such as Georgian, Edwardian and Victorian houses, can help to make an area standout and grow in value long-term. But while older properties offer generous proportions, some are not modernised and can lack facilities such as up-to-date central heating and double glazing, presenting an opportunity to add value to the property
Add value to the property
From general DIY to building an extension, some areas offer more of the sort of properties that allow you to add value than others. Take a look at some of our top tips here.
What did next door sell for?
‘Comparison’ is a useful valuation method as it can help determine whether you are paying the right price for a property, especially in an area that you are not over familiar with. Property Price Advice can tell you how much other similar properties in the area sold for, and how much the property you are looking at is worth – just visit our Sold House Prices page here.
From helping to identify sought-after areas and emerging hotspots to advising on how much buyers should expect to pay, an agent’s local knowledge and expertise is invaluable when it comes to choosing a suitable property on the right road. For instance, a property located a few hundred yards away from the border of a desirable postal address could offer better value-for-money and greater room for future capital growth.
Avoid entering a ‘post code lottery’ by securing a property on a street that falls within the catchment of the best local school – refer to the Ofsted report for the best local schools. Proximity to good schools can often boost the value of a property
What sort of amenities does the local area have to offer? Nice shops, estate agents and places to eat all suggest a flourishing area, while decent transport links and excellent schools will also appeal to homeowners.
Research the area
How long does it take to get to the local train station? Where’s the nearest park? What shops does the area offer? What are the local pubs like? Walk around the neighbourhood to get a proper feel for it.
Is the area up and coming? Check with the council to see if there are plans to redevelop or improve the local area; making it more desirable should push up local home prices.
Consider areas with established transport facilities and places with exciting new transport links, making them more accessible, as this could drive up local property prices.
You may have to be prepared to sacrifice having a large garden or a smaller property in order to afford to live in your chosen location.