Buyer's Guide

Saving for deposit

The deposit put down on a new property will be one of the biggest investments in your lifetime, with lenders asking for at least 5% of the property price upfront.

The type of mortgage you choose will determine how much you need to save, with some of the most popular being:

  • Repayment/interest-only
  • Fixed-rate
  • First-time
  • Variable rate
  • Guarantor

Speak to a lender/broker about mortgages

Speak to a lender or broker about your options and they will be able to inform you of how much you can afford to spend up to. They will inform you of the mortgage you can afford based on income, and the cash deposit you have available. They will take into account your earnings, savings, any additional source of funds and your credit score – this will also to apply to an co-purchasers.

If you are buying outside of your current area, do your background research to ensure it has everything you need for the time you will be there. You may want to consider the following:

  • Public transport links
  • Local schools and catchment areas
  • Nearby facilities such as shops and supermarkets
  • Development plans that could increase or decrease property value
  • Crime levels
  • Nearby doctors, dentists and hospitals

At Hotblack Desiato, you can register your purchase requirements with us online and keep up-to-date with the latest properties that are relevant to your search. We will email you when a new property comes onto the market which matches your requirements, ensuring that you are kept ahead of the competition.

Put in an offer

Once you have found a property you’d like to buy, the next stage is to put in a strong bid. Don’t commit all your money at once, as you want to leave room for negotiation with the seller – you may even get very lucky and have your first offer accepted.

Make a mortgage application

The next stage is to seek a mortgage agreement in principle (AIP) from the lender. This states they are, in principle, happy to provide a loan. This sets you up as a serious buyer to sellers and can give you the edge over others as it shows you have the backing of the lender to afford the property.

Find a solicitor

You will need a solicitor to handle the legal work associated with the purchase of the property. This will involve dealing with things such as stamp duty, Land Registry, obtain local searches and transfer of funds once the deal has been completed. If required, our team will be happy to recommend a friendly and dependable local solicitor who we’ve working with for a number of years.

Organise a survey

This is optional when purchasing a house, but highly recommended. It allows you to identify any problems with the property so it can be budgeted for and the sale price potentially adjusted. Alternatively, if issues are raised, the seller can arrange to solve these themselves. There are usually three types of survey available – a condition report, HomeBuyer’s report and a build survey.

Finalise the deposit

The money you have available for the deposit will have to be handed over to the solicitor. This can either be raised from the money you originally had for the deposit, or by the sale of any existing property you may own.

Exchange contracts

When the contracts are exchanged you become legally obligated to proceed with the sale – so be sure you are happy with everything at this point. Should you decide to withdraw after this happens you could lose your full deposit. Before exchanging contracts you will need to agree a completion date, which is typically 4 weeks after the exchange. Also ensure that buildings insurance is taken out from the same day of the exchange.

Complete the sale

The solicitor will update the land registry with your details at this point. They will also be in contact with your mortgage lender to verify funds are available, so have this prepared to transfer to the solicitor. The day of completion is when funds and property deeds are transferred between seller and buyer, and the keys to the property can also be handed over.

Final actions

The solicitor will send a statement listing all of their costs, along with the cost of the property and stamp duty. The stamp duty will usually be paid by the solicitor, so you won’t have to worry about dealing with that element of the transaction. You may also receive a reimbursement of costs if the solicitor calculates they have overcharged you.

Hiten was incredibly helpful and supportive as I went through a challenging sales process. He was proactive and willing to do whatever was necessary to get everything over the line. Would highly recommend.

Luke Porter

Fantastic Estate Agent. Had positive experiences in all our dealings with the team and Alasdair is a particularly lovely guy!

Jake Scott

Gino was extremely helpful and responsive. It was great how he really listened to what we needed and was able to advise us on how to close on a rental in a short timespan.

Sanjana Govil

I worked with Hiten on the sale of my house and he did a great job in helping the transaction go through. He developed a good rapport with the eventual buyers and was always very informative and quick to respond to any queries (from either side). Would de ... Read More

Daryl Leigh

We worked with Gino. He was really professional and kind for us even though we were unusal to contract the property since it was our first house to live in London. He replies all the email as soon as he can.

Eunjung Park

My partner and I bought a house with Hotblack Desiato acting as the selling agent. Very professional, nice and honest agents with deep knowledge of the local areas they work in. Very responsive to all our queries from first visit up to closing of the tran ... Read More

Damien Pasini

I worked with Gino who went above and beyond to help me find my flat. He was so helpful and responsive and made the process so much more enjoyable. He found me a flat in the exact neighborhood and description I provided. He walked me through every step of ... Read More

Blair Gilbert

Bought a house that was on with Hotblack recently. The agent, Mark was a breath of fresh air compared to a lot of agents I've dealt with. Super honest and transparent, always available to give impartial advice on the process and best way to move forward. ... Read More

Mikhail Grechishkin

Gino was personable and kept me informed throughout the tenancy arrangement process. The vetting service was slow and less competent than I would expect - but Gino kept me up to date on progress. This was reassuring as I had recently experienced a stressf ... Read More

Marie Field

Contact us

If you are looking to buy a property in North London, we have an extensive selection of properties for sale. Visit one of our branches today or contact one of our expert estate agents for more information on available properties.

Islington Estate Agent – 020 7226 0160
Highbury Estate Agent – 020 7288 9696
Camden Estate Agent – 020 7482 2894

Your Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our site and to personalise the content, provide social media features and to analyse how our site is used.

More Information