Skip to main content
This site uses cookies, find out more

13 things you wish you’d known before you bought your first house

David Castling30 September 2019

We asked our customers, and our people, what gems of info they would’ve found really helpful before they purchased their first pad. Have a read now, so the only thing you’ll have to worry about when you move is which of your new local takeaways you’ll be visiting first.

  1. “Check whether your property is freehold or leasehold. A leasehold property meant we had a chunky fee to pay periodically and also had a maintenance charge too. This was one of the first things I checked when I went on to buy my next house!”

    Kate, Yorkshire

  2. “Wish we knew about additional charges, the stress it can bring and additional help available.”

    Jonathan, Northern Ireland

  3. “Shop around, don’t take the first solicitor, building insurance, etc that are recommended to you.”

    Kelly, Newton Aycliffe

  4. “Make sure you have ordered your furniture in time for it to be delivered when you move in.”

    Sean, Consett

  5. “If you’re buying a house older than 20 years old, check to see if it’s had cavity wall insulation and up to date loft insulation fitted. My first house has very poor loft insulation and no cavity wall insulation, so it’s getting colder now autumn is rolling in. There’s a cost to getting these fitted – and high energy bills until we do!”

    Jorge, Washington

  6. “I wish I knew that I couldn’t pick who I wanted for internet and bills straight away. I was keen to go with challenger providers but couldn’t; we bought a new build property and it wasn’t on most providers’ address lists, so we had to go with BT. I also wish I knew new builds don’t always come with carpets or garden gates (who knew you had to pay to keep people out?). We got lucky and ours did, but it’s worth knowing those aren’t guaranteed.”

    Matthew, Durham

  7. “To help avoid nasty surprises, do your research and make sure you know what the various homebuyer surveys cover. Although an additional cost for a survey may seem off-putting, it could end up saving you a lot of money further down the line.”

    Hollie, Newcastle

  8. “If you’re buying a house from someone else and if things go wrong, don’t take their advice. Make sure to seek expert and independent advice.”

    Stephen, Gateshead

  9. “It’s not cheeky to chase your solicitor for an update or to speed up the process! If you don’t, you may miss your completion date!”

    Mohammed, Middlesbrough

  10. “Research the area you are moving to as this may reveal planned developments in the area. I purchased my first home based upon its rural location and six months after moving in they started to build a new estate on the same street! If I had done my research and looked online I would have known this before buying my house.”

    Rachel, Bury

  11. “Make sure you don’t pay for someone else’s bills! Take meter readings when you move out of your previous house, but also before you move into your new one and start using the supply.”

    Emma, Hartlepool

  12. “Don’t be afraid to ask for multiple viewings of a property before deciding to buy. You may notice things on the second or third viewing that you missed initially. This will help you to decide whether the property really is for you or if you should look elsewhere.”

    Fatima, Birmingham

  13. “I wish I’d known how often you have to water freshly laid grass! I bought a new build and if I’d known beforehand I would have paid extra for an outside tap.”

    George, Inverness