The 10 things buyers wish they’d known before buying

Discover the 10 things buyers wished they’d known before buying their new build property according to over 7,000 homeowners on HomeViews.

This list is part of our first-ever New Build Buyer’s Guide created in collaboration with the HomeOwners Alliance. Take a look at the 10 things list below and download the full guide all the advice you need for a smooth buying process.

1 “I wish I’d done more research on the developer and the property manager”

If you’re buying from new, the developer will help with immediate problems, but longer-term, it’s the property managers who will address any issues you raise. The quality of your property manager can have a major impact on your quality of life in your home.

2 “I wish I’d known more about the parking arrangements”

Parking is regularly mentioned as a problem by owners, particularly for those with more than one car or who have regular visitors. Excessive street parking can make life difficult in smaller roads where neighbours do not have enough off-street parking space.

3 “I wish I’d known more about the quality of the garden”

Many buyers mentioned problems with drainage and gardens. They said they wish they had known more about what to expect in terms of topsoil provision and the potential for flooding.

4 “I wish I’d known more about snagging surveys”

Snagging surveys were a common topic that owners wish they’d known about before moving in. Many residents who didn’t have one regretted it afterwards. Snagging was the most-mentioned topic for property buyers outside London who answered this question.

5 “I wish I’d viewed the property at different times of the day”

Visit more than once before choosing your home. Visit at times of day to check noise levels, daylight/night-time lighting, roads, potential flooding, mobile signal strength, etc. Walk to local shops, bus stop, train station and other amenities, and check security on and around the development.

6 “I wish I’d checked the terms and conditions more carefully”

Check your T&Cs carefully, especially any regarding service charges, maintenance fees and management fees. Service charges – and particularly future rate increases – were something many owners said they wish they had known more about before buying.

7 “I wish I’d communicated more proactively with the developer”

Check options for extra features or customising the property and chase up any issues quickly. If something is important to you, make sure you have it in writing!

8 “I wish I’d known more about development plans in the area”

Many owners said they wish they’d more carefully checked development plans in the area – especially regarding green spaces, social housing and busy roads. Find out how much work will continue on and around your development once you’ve moved in.

9 “I wish I’d been more careful in choosing a specific home”

Owners said they’d underestimated the importance of choosing a specific home within a development in terms of its location and orientation. They wish they’d more carefully considered what level it was on, which side of the building, nearby roads, bin stores, entranceways, etc.

10 “I wish I’d known about resident groups before moving in”

Resident groups can be extremely helpful and may be on WhatsApp, Facebook, on a resident app, or in-person. You can use these to talk with other residents who’ve moved in before you and find out what to expect. Of course, HomeViews reviews also let you read what the neighbours are saying!

2022 New Build Buyer’s Guide

Our new Buyer’s Guide draws on reviews from over 7,000 verified UK property buyers. As well as the Top 10 developers for first time buyers, the guide also includes a list of the 10 things owners wish they’d known before buying and a list of Top 5 housing associations for Shared Owners. The HomeOwners Alliance collaborated with HomeViews on the guide, adding their expert tips and advice.

Download your FREE copy of the full report:

HomeViews provides verified resident reviews of the UK’s housing developments. We’re working with developers, house builders, operators, housing associations and the Government to recognise high performers and help improve standards in the built environment.

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