There’s a lot to think about and remember when you’re buying your first home – so here’s a quick Property Purchase Checklist covering the main points.
The following Property Purchase checklist provides a valuable resource for planning the purchase of your new home.
Finding a home
- Decide what sort of areas you’re interested in and check them out.
- Make a list of everything you’d like in a home.
- Gather together details about your income, expenses and savings.
- Talk to your Mortgage Broker about your plans – find out what you can afford.
- Ask about getting a pre-approved loan and discuss deposit requirements
- If relying on Kiwi Saver, complete application with your provider to confirm availability and amount
- Get a feel for the market – read the papers, talk with several agents.
- Find a good lawyer early on – your broker can make recommendations
- Look at as many homes as you can
Before making your offer
- Register your interest early if the place is being sold by auction or tender.
- Talk with your Mortgage Broker again – check the conditions needed in your offer.
- If using Kiwi Saver as part of your deposit, ensure you have completed the application process and arranged for the deposit funds to be credited to your solicitor’s trust account.
- Do a thorough check of the property – use the ‘Buying a House’ checklist below.
- Ask the agent as many questions as you can
- Check the council records including the property pack
- Try to estimate the value – ask the agent about recent sales and price trends.
- Talk with your lawyer about your offer (or the auction or tender documents) – check the conditions needed in your offer.
Once your offer is accepted
- Pay a deposit on the property to the real estate agent.
- Give a copy of the sale and purchase agreement to your lawyer and Mortgage Broker.
- Decide what sort of home loan and loan mix you’d like– discuss with your Mortgage Broker.
- Arrange for a valuation report, if one is needed – Mortgage Broker can assist.
- Organise building consultants and engineer’s reports if they are needed.
- Apply for a LIM report and check the district plan (your lawyer usually does this).
- Arrange insurance for the home – Mortgage Broker & Insurance Advisor will be able to provide options
- Make a time with the lawyer to sign mortgage papers.
- Mortgage Broker will co-ordinate an appointment with the new lender.
- Set up any new bank accounts and automatic payments needed.
At settlement time
- Arrange for the money you’re paying yourself to be ready on settlement day.
- Do a pre-settlement check of the property.
- On settlement day check with your lawyer that everything is going ahead.
- Once your solicitor has confirmation of settlement, the real estate agent will make the keys available
- After settlement check the statement and papers your lawyer sends you.
- Make sure you get a copy of the title showing you as the new owner.
- Check your loan and insurance payments are going out as expected.
- Your Mortgage Broker will schedule a review in 6-12 months or expiry of the fixed rate
Arranging the move
- Give your landlord notice & apply to get your bond back.
- Arrange a moving in time with the last owners.
- Contact power, gas, phone and television companies.
- Redirect your mail and send change of address cards.
Checklist for Buying a house
An important part of the Property Purchase checklist is to work through a list of key items that you or a professional should check before buying a house.
Ask the agent and the seller if there are any issues with the house.
Thoroughly check the house yourself or use the services of an appropriate professional.
You should look at:
- the roof
- plumbing, including water pressure
- electrical wiring
- the piles
- insulation (especially above ceilings where most heat escapes)
- fences, paving, and driveways
- evidence of house movement
- any alterations that do not appear on the plan.
Check the property for potential signs of leaking, including:
- visible water damage
- cracks in the external cladding
- mold on ceilings and internal walls
- bulging or stained walls and skirtings
- balconies on upper floors without good drainage.
Make sure you:
- view the property file at the local council
- and/or obtain a LIM from the local council
- engage an experienced building surveyor to report on the property (if you choose)
- seek legal advice about any issues that arise in the LIM or property report
- obtain legal advice before you sign the contract
- don’t sign the contract until you are confident it is right for you.
Will there be any maintenance?
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