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Home Buyer's Guide

Get a mortgage offer in principle before you start hunting.This gives you the power to make a solid offer on the property, backed up by your mortgage lender.

Choose a solicitor to act for you. Your lender will need to know who your solicitor is.

Do not just rely on estate agents to find you a property. The internet is a great place to look for your ideal home.

Know what type of property you want and where you want to live. This will focus your search, helping you to find your dream home more quickly.

Do not be put off by bad decor Look past drab and dingy interiors - if you can see potential then go for it!

Visit the property at different times. This will give you a good idea of the neighbourhood, traffic and general noise levels, helping you get a better idea of the area, and whether you want to live there or not..

Check out the neighbours. Neighbours can make or break a dream home. Make sure you know if you will get on..

Still have a question about a Real Estate term or its definition? See our Real Estate Glossary.

Do not skimp on surveys. Valuations are compulsory if you want to get a mortgage. Surveys ensure that the property is worth the asking price and that there are no problems that may affect your mortgage.

First impressions mean everything. You will know when you have found the right home. Act on it and you will never look back.

Negotiate. Try to knock the seller's price down - you never know,you just may end up with a bargain.

Protect yourself from being gazumped. Put in your negotiated offer and ask the estate agent to take the property off the market.This way you can potentially avoid other buyers putting in a higher offer.

If your offer is accepted. Instruct your solicitor and provide them with the property details and also proof of identification..