Which is harder, moving home or being a first-time buyer?

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An ongoing debate in the mortgage world is whether it is more difficult to be a first time buyer or a second time buyer. As a first time buyer, everything is new and scary. The learning curve is incredibly steep and you have to become an expert in everything from mortgages to conveyancing in a short space of time.

However, as a second time buyer, you not only have to deal with buying a new home, you also have to manage selling your old home. Each side has its perks and pitfalls, but which one is more difficult? In this blog, we’ll look at some of the ways you can make life easier as a first time or second time buyer.

Getting help as a first time buyer

Being a first time buyer is no doubt a daunting experience. But it’s important to remember that there is a lot of support available. Not only in terms of financial support, but also in terms of getting advice. First time buyers have access to the Help to Buy ISA and other schemes which can make it easier to get on the property ladder. In addition to this financial support, you will also be able to ask for advice from these organisations. 

Mistakes first time buyers make

One common mistake that first time buyers make it assuming that the estate agent is their best friend. It’s important to remember that you are not their priority. They work for the seller, so you shouldn’t rely on the estate agent to do anything except try to sell you a property.

If you follow their advice, you could end up with a mortgage that isn’t right for you, or paying too much for a property. Remember that they earn commission on the sale, so it’s not uncommon for them to say anything you want to hear just to get you to make an offer.

Another common mistake is to assume that you can only use the conveyancing solicitor suggested by the estate agent. They will often have financial agreements with solicitors and may receive a commission for every referral. This means you could end up paying more than you need to.

Support for second time buyers

When you are a second time buyer, you’ve already been around the block. You know how the mortgage application process works and you can navigate with a bit of confidence. However, you are also in a delicate situation where you need to find a buyer for your home while also looking for a new home.

This can be very stressful, but remember that you are now in the driving seat. As a second time buyer, estate agents will suddenly be very keen to help you out. Remember that you are the client this time around and you call the shots. But don’t make the mistake of going for the cheapest option. Paying more in estate agent fees could be worthwhile if the agent is quick to find a buyer and they secure a higher purchase price.

Mistakes made by second time buyers

Most of the mistakes relate to selling your existing home. Simple things like letting the maintenance standards fall can seriously damage your ability to see your home. Setting the asking price is also a difficult field. If you overvalue while fully expecting to accept a lower price, you could lower your potential audience as people search based on their price range.

And finally, failing to be flexible with viewings can be another reason properties don’t sell. It might be annoying keeping your home spotless while strangers trudge around your halls, but you will likely be doing this to other people in your search for a new home. 

Both can benefit from a broker

Whether you are a first time buyer or a second time buyer, it makes sense to shop around for the best mortgage deal. By working with a specialist broker, you will have access to the latest offers and deals. Having your mortgage application declined for any reason can delay the home buying process and may even lead you to lose out on your dream home. By working with a broker, you can be confident your application will be accepted.

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