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This article was first published 9 years ago  » Getahead » Buying a house? 5 things to watch out for

Buying a house? 5 things to watch out for

By Raja Mukherjee
Last updated on: December 09, 2014 16:42 IST
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Do your home work well before you go for it!

Home buying is a dream for many people. But if you take a wrong decision it becomes a nightmare. Purchasing a new home is not always cut and dry. While the housing market is down, inventory is up. There are many homes for sale that are being offered at very competitive prices. If you’re in the market for a new home, now may be the perfect time to make your purchase. But, before making an investment for lifetime, there are many factors that come into play and much to be considered.


To start with,researchis important and plays a major role in the purchase of a new home. Conduct an adequate property analysis keeping in mind the factors such as location, transport, upcoming zones, availability of good schools, living and social needs and shopping complexes as not all the places are ideal to live.

Legal clearances of the land should also be checked before buying a property as builders might be building on a disputed land. As a result, you can’t even sell the property after making a purchase.

Worse, there is no clarity on whether the properties under-construction will ever be completed.

Never judge a house by its cover

Most sellers do some staging to a home before putting it on the market. While staging can make a home look fantastic, it is important to look beyond the decor.

Look at the structure and the flow of the home and check whether it’s meeting your need for enough rooms, proper space, and tall ceilings.

Focus on the possibility and the potential that lies within the home.

When everything is out of the home and it is yours, you have the opportunity to do whatever you want to do to the colours and decor.

Consider your borrowing capacity

You may have found the home of your dreams, but the seller may not agree to your price and terms, or issues may come up during home inspections that are unable to be resolved.

To escape the hassle, consider your borrowing capacity.

Understand your family’s finances and needs, crack debts and obtain pre-approval for finance before jumping into a house hunt.

Always remember that the price of the property is not the only cost to be borne; hidden costs such as stamp duty, legal fees, inspection fees, mortgage fees and the like should also be taken into account.

Ensure that you’ve budgeted for these too, lest they spring up unpleasant surprises later as banks gives loan only for the actual cost of the flat, not the overhead expenses home buyer have to bear.

Be aware of the loading charges

Always be aware of the loading charges.The difference between super built-up and carpet area is called loading.

The home buyer should always know what s/he’s paying for. Many builders might advertise that the flat on sale is of 1,000 sq ft. It is only later you realise that the 1,000 sq ft includes areas like staircases, passages and lifts and so on. Hence, it’s important to know how much the carpet area is. The carpet area is the actual usable area.

Often, developers commit that loading won’t exceed a specified limit. One should verify this against what the developer states and charges you for.

Legal aspects

Once the research and pricing is done, you have a better understanding of the process. It is strongly recommend that you speak with consultant or hire a legal aid which is needed to interpret certain property documents.

A lawyer can better interpret the fine print of your sale agreement and title certifications for legal clearance of land.

Hence, it’s very important to take a legal route before spending a fortune for the investment.

A realty investment should never be purely based on offers. Many a times, builders offer freebies like limited period discounts, holiday packages, gold coins, branded furniture and modular kitchens. Individuals should avoid falling prey to marketing gimmicks.

While all such offers are not bad, one must not make this the sole deciding factor in choosing a house.

Photograph: See-ming Lee/Wikimedia Commons

The author is Head -- Sales & Marketing, Concorde Group

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Raja Mukherjee