22nd July 2016
Buying your first property is a huge financial commitment, but it can also be a truly exciting experience. When it comes to making that bold decision to secure your first property with your hard-earned savings, you can easily run into enough conflicting information to confuse even the savviest of buyers!
Over the last few weeks we have been asking our readers to share top advice for someone else buying their first home, in return for a chance to win a tasting menu for 2 for at Brighton’s 24 St Georges. We have been amazed by the wealth of information that’s been shared, and we thought it only right that we share these tips with you, as a go-to guide for when you decide to take the property plunge!
When it comes to first-time buyers tips, many of you are adamant that location, location, location is key! As Robin Wood suggested, “visit the location at different times, i.e. morning, afternoon and evenings/night and at weekends. Some areas change depending on what day or time of day.”
However, it is also important to look at the bigger picture when viewing properties. “Keep an open mind when viewing a property. How others live in it isn't how you have to live in it” - Harvey Jay Hendrix Gee.
According to the 2015 Which? National Property Survey, the average first-time buyer deposit was 17%.
When trying to save your precious pennies, many entrants suggested government-backed schemes as a great alternative for those that are struggling to save. Sammie Campbell suggested, “Research thoroughly into the first-time buyer and government-backed schemes, like Help to Buy and ISAs for home buyers. Getting on the property ladder may not be as hard as you think.”
Gill Barwood also saw the great benefits of using the Help to Buy initiative, “My advice to first time buyers is to save under the Help to Buy scheme, as the government will give you 25% of what you have saved up this way at the end. You do this as individuals, so if you are a couple trying to save for your first place you can both benefit from the scheme, and could be given as much as £6,000 between you on top of what you have saved”.
Lee-Anne Peck made a fantastic suggestion for all first-time homebuyers, advising them to invest in a top building survey: “it's invaluable in saving you money in the long run! If you go for a cheap survey, it won't pick up on building issues like damp that could cost you thousands later down the line…an expensive survey is literally worth its weight in gold”.
From agreements in principle and conveyancing to leaseholds and freeholds, mortgage jargon can leave first-time buyers feeling rather overwhelmed. Katie Rayner suggests making the most out of a property expert’s knowledge, “don't be afraid to ask the Estate Agents, Solicitor, Surveyor or Building Society to clarify things that you don't understand, remember these people work in this environment day in day out and you are not expected to understand their jargon, even if you think it’s stupid or irrelevant it may not be”.
With over 40 entrants, choosing an overall winner of the competition was a tough decision for the Maslen team. With all four branches across Brighton and Hove voting, we decided that Petra Bartholomaei was our worthy winner. Her winning entry provided some great practical advice on the best way to find your new home. Petra suggested, “Don’t just rely on the Internet to look at houses. Go into the estate agents as they can tell you about new properties that are going to hit the market. Some of the best properties online are gone before you can get a viewing. Make sure you look at a few properties before making an offer to get a better idea of the market too”.
We hope these tips have inspired some first-time buyers, giving you the confidence and practical advice to go out and find your first dream home! If you would like to discuss your first-time buyer needs with our team of property experts, go ahead and contact us today.
Thank you Maslens, you were all excellent!
Miss Jasper Taunton Road
We cannot recommend Maslen's estate agents enough.
Many thanks to Paul, Donna, Janette and the...
Linda & Les Wigmore Close
Outstanding service from Sharon. James is an asset to Maslens & Harvey was so helpful and polite.
Ms Cianchetta Selhurst Road
Cannot express our appreciation enough of all the efforts made by the Woodingdean team - they were fantastic.
Mr John Mogridge Woodingdean
Excellent service as always
Mr Field Ringmer Road
An efficient, professional and friendly service. Helpful and a pleasure to do business with.
Mr Beddington Brading Road
Very pleased with the service. Many thanks to Sharon and the boys!
Mr Flynn Woodingdean
Many thanks to Nick. It was an easy process thanks to you! I'm extremely satisfied with how the sale went, great job.
Ms Mayanobe Aymer Road
The team worked very hard over a long period to ensure my sale went through - excellent service!
Mr Patrick Gladstone Terrace
I found the service to be courteous, friendly and efficient.
Mr Upton Buller Road
Thank you for everything!
Ms Tucker Willow Close
Very helpful and patient team.
Mrs Shea Selborne Place
Excellent communication and advice throughout. It felt very reassuring to be in good hands.
Mrs Brooker Buller Road
Very professional service. Thank you!
Miss New & Mr Jackson Buller Road
Exceptional service throughout the process - should we decide to sell in the future we wouldn't hesitate to use your agency. You're a cut above the...
Ms Windels & Mr Barham Fiveways
Best Estate Agents ever experienced - professional, approachable, competent and exemplary.
Mr & Mrs Guest Riley Road
Ben and Paula were calm and reassuring throughout a very difficult process!
Ms Easterbrook Bear Road
We were very impressed with the Nick from start to finish.
Mr & Mrs Smith Lewes Road
Please thank Paula at Lewes Road - Excellent service.
Mr & Mrs Nuthall Lewes Road
You were amazingly helpful throughout - a real pillar of strength with a very difficult sale.
Mrs Parkin Fiveways
Paula was absolutely amazing!
Mr & Mrs MacKay Lewes Road
All the staff I dealt with were excellent. Sharon worked really hard to complete the sale.
Mrs Bent Falmer Gardens
Harvey was helpful and easily reachable at the beginning of the process and Sharon kept us informed and was always happy to help.
Ms Murch & Ms Mapa Ticehurst Road
Service exceeded my expectations overall at all stages of the process - I wouldn't hesitate to recommend you. Thanks.
Ms Greene Lewes Road
I would recommend Maslen to anyone.
Mrs Tripp Woodingdean
Sharon was excellent, she kept us informed at all stages and was a really calming objective influence in the process.
Ms Frederick Channel View Road
Paula is amazing!
Ms Aspnall Gladstone Place
Very comprehensive and professional. Nice people to work with and highly recommended.
Mr Alderton Ladysmith Road
Great service, always polite and friendly. Excellent contact and info all the way.
Mr Wells Bishops Road
The staff were very helpful, an excellent service. I would recommend you to others.
Miss Hockly Fiveways
First class service. Friendly and professional.
Mr Thorne The Avenue
A very committed team who made the sale process very easy.
Ms Rees Ticehurst Road
Very impressed with the efficient and friendly service, the staff were a pleasure to deal with.
Mr & Mrs Gill Lewes Road
Compared to your rivals, your service was excellent
Ms McGrigor Milner Road
Sharon and her team could not have done more in what was a difficult sale.
Ms Daly Woodingdean
Thanks for an excellent service.
Mr King Hove
Extremely efficient. Nick and Paula are excellent. The weekly phone calls were much appreciated.
Ms Gray Lewes Road
First class service from a first class team.
Mr & Mrs English The Ridgway
I was new to the area and viewed a lot of properties with a lot of different agents. Maslens were by far the best I came in contact with, so when i...
Mr & Mrs Heer Lewes Road
We were very pleased with services provided by the Fiveways office.
Mr & Mrs Sawyer Shaftesbury Road
Very thorough & very informative.
Mr Michnowicz Waldegrave Road
Excellent service from the Lewes Road branch. Martin Timms secured a quick sale & at a good price & Paula Carter worked really hard to secure...
Ms Schulte Bear Road
Very happy with the service we got from you guys, everyone we dealt with was extremely friendly, professional and helpful. Thanks!
Mr Brown Titian Road
Paula's role was brilliant. Having someone office based and available was so appreciated and her promptness an impressive service - every Estate Agent...
Ms Wynn-Jones Baxter Street
Very, very happy we chose you, felt right from the start! Thank you!
Miss Blackadder Coniston Court, Holland Road
Hugely impressed with Ben & his team.
Mrs Mead Upper Lewes Road
Thanks David, all very professional.
Mrs Flowers Foxdown Road
Already recommended you! Thank you.
Mr Edwards The Ridgway
It was an amazing experience, everyone involved were fantastic.
Mr & Mrs Knight Woodingdean
Excellent Service from start to finish.
Mr T Mole Cromwell Road
Very good service and communication. Paula was excellent.
Mr & Mrs Scarboro 1 Pevensey Road
Thank you Paul and Archie, you gave an excellent service, as well as Kelly. I look forward to working with you again.
Mr White Fiveways
Very impressed with the service. Sharon Wareham works tirelessly, very professionally and is always there for advice.
Miss Matthews Kipling Avenue
Very pleased with the experience. I would definitely recommend you and use you again.
Ms D Edmonds Horton Road
The whole team were very committed from start to finish.
Mr Pilgrim Lewes Road
Maslens as a whole were really friendly and professional. I have to thank and congratulate Paula Carter for being superb at her job and exceeding m...
Ms Warren Hove
Quality advice about when and how to sell, which was spot on. Thank you.
Miss Coleman Buller Road
The whole team were excellent, each one of them felt like family. Sharon had a lot of sorting to do at times but coped very well, a true profession...
Mr Vernon Woodingdean
Sold within 2 weeks for asking price "excellent!"
Mr Grundy Bishops Road
Paul was absolutely brilliant.
Mrs Tasker Fiveways
Nick and Paula are total stars! They were incredibly supportive and present throughout. Thank you!
Miss O'Haire Hove
We were delighted with the service received from all the staff with whom we had contact,
Dr Crichton The Ridgway
Our local office manager, Sharon Wareham was warm and friendly and kept us up to date at all times.
Mr Hope The Brow
In February 2016 I was looking to buy and sell very rapidly. Competition among buyers at the time was very high. Sharon @ the Woodingdean branch sh...
Ms Helen Lyons Woodingdean
A good team at Woodingdean helped us through a stressful time.
Mr & Mrs Penton Sycamore Close
Excellent customer service throughout. I will definitely recommend you, and use you again. Thank you.
Ms Longley Kingsbury Street
Thank you. We found all the staff knowledgeable and really pleasant to deal with.
Ms Ansloos Lewes Road
Good team. Straightforward. No nonsense.
Mr Standing Newmarket Road
Paula was fabulous and we felt really informed and supported.
Mr & Mrs Walker Lewes Road
It was a long, drawn out process that the people at Maslen helped me through, without the impression that it was a chore. So extremely professional...
Mr McLagan Lewes Road
Paul Wilkinson was extremely helpful and efficient. The only problem was the vendors solicitor and Paul warned me of this. A good transaction all r...
Mr Lavender Fiveways
I have bought and sold 7 properties, and this was the best experience of an estate agents services I have found.
Mrs Shepherd Hertford Road
All agents at Maslen were extremely helpful and polite from the beginning to the completion of sale.
Mr Johnson Fiveways
As always, an excellent service.
Mr & Mrs Field Lewes Road
Sharon was excellent - kept us well informed, thank you so much!
Ms Waters Cowley Drive
From start to finish the sale was dealt with in a thoroughly professional manner.
Mr Gibbs Lewes Road
Very pleased with the excellent service throughout. Professional, friendly, efficient and no hard sell. Achieved above asking price. Thank you!
Mr Witten Lewes Road
Very impressed with all dealings with Maslen. Paula Carter was in particular very knowledgeable and helpful.
Mr McBlane Hove
The sale was dealt with swiftly, professionally and successfully. Thank you Maslen!
Mrs Lincoln Hove
Sharon was amazing! She kept us up to date the whole way through the process. We cannot fault Sharon or the rest of her team.
Mr & Mrs Ashley Woodingdean
Best Agents in Brighton.
Mrs Field Tarner Road
Ben was particularly enthusiastic and helpful. Martin, Paula, Sam and Will are all hard workers.
Ms Goodey Franklin Road
Fantastic service. By far the best agents we have ever used, I cannot recommend you highly enough.
Mr Field Mafeking Road
A completely painless experience from start to finish. Thank you.
Mr Woolven & Mrs Bessant-Woolven Lewes Road
Very impressive - professional and friendly, both Martin Timms and Paula Carter were excellent at keeping in contact with sensible advice based on...
Mrs O'Connor Hove
A really good experience.
Mr Tibble Lewes Road
The Woodingdean team were very friendly and approachable.
Mrs Palmer Pitt Gardens
Graham Griffin provided us, and continues to provide us, will all-round excellent advice. We trust his knowledge and expertise.
Mr Blackmore & Ms O'Sullivan Financial Services
Sharon, Harvey and James were all excellent - very professional. Totally opposite to what I have experienced with other agents. Maslen have restore...
Ms Lyons Woodingdean
All very professional, kept updated throughout. Very pleased - Would recommend.
Mrs Hammond Hove
A very positive experience - I had most contact with the Fiveways office and they were so friendly and helpful.
Ms A King Balfour Road
Brilliant. Well done to Sharon and the Woodingdean team.
Ms Curtis The Ridgway
I wish we had used you to sell our property! Nice to meet honest people, who are genuinely interested in helping. Very pleased.
Mrs Porter Taunton Road
Superb service as usual, I would always recommend you.
Ms S Hike Blackthorn Close