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Why it’s a Good Idea to Rent Before You Buy

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If you’re just getting on the property ladder, or you’re moving to a new area, you might be wondering whether to buy or rent.

While you may feel you have no other option but to rent, it doesn’t have to be a last resort! Here’s why it’s a good idea to rent before you buy.

The cost of moving house

Here are some rough estimates involved with the cost of moving house:

The Cost of Buying
Stamp Duty£1,864.50
Legal Fees (Conveyancing)£780.00
Valuation Fee (for Mortgage)£227.00
The Cost of Selling
Estate Agents£3,273.33
Legal Fees (Conveyancing)£580.00
Basic Moving Costs
Removal Company£1,192.67
Postal Redirection£43.99

Renting or buying?

Evidently, moving house can have serious financial implications. Therefore, buying or selling a home is not something you want to do often.

Here are some reasons why it’s a good idea to rent before you buy:

Chain-free status

Renting before you buy will put you in a stronger position, as you’ll be able to leverage your chain-free status, which is more desirable to sellers. Property chains are notorious for delays, so being chain-free can make you more attractive.

Area familiarisation

If you’re unfamiliar with an area, try renting before you buy.

You might be relocating to a new area for work reasons, or moving from the town to the country.

This approach allows you to keep your options open, without the costly financial expense of realising you have made a mistake and need to move again.

If you’re moving to a new area and you aren’t familiar with it, you don’t intuitively know the different areas. The reality of transport links or traffic routes may be different from what you initially perceived, and schools may not live up to expectations.

In other words, there are a host of things you only really find out when you live in an area.

If you’ve got a couple of locations in mind, consider short-term lets in the different areas, to get a feel for living in each.

Be mindful that short-term lets aren’t cheap! But, the additional short-term costs may help you make the right purchasing decision and save you money in the long run.

Also, by renting in the area, you will likely work your way onto the estate agent’s hot buyers list. This will give you the opportunity to view properties early, as you’re demonstrating your commitment to purchasing in the area.

Try before you buy

Whether you’re a first-time buyer or not, renting a property similar to the one you want to buy can help determine if it’s right for you.

You might find that a lower ground floor flat is not for you and you want to be on an upper floor, for example. Or, you may discover you need some outside space, whether that be a garden, roof terrace or balcony.

Also, you could ask the lettings agent what the chances are of you buying your rental, if you fall in love with it. It never hurts to ask!

Want to get to know an area?

Want to get to know an area? Whether you’re buying or renting, find out all you need to know with Phil Spencer’s Property Report! A report contains information on everything from crime rates and neighbours to schools. Get your report below.

Get a Property Report

Last Updated: August 11th, 2021

Phil Spencer

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