Before finally deciding on your dream home, you want to ensure that it’s “the one.” Meaning, you have to ensure that everything is in place before eventually owning your dream home. But with so many options and homes on sale in Kenya, how do you find “the one?” We have put together 5 questions to ask when buying a home in Kenya to guide you in separating the ‘weed from the chaff.’
Buying your dream home is an exciting event, but it comes with a lot of stress. It is the critical time when you do not want to make a mistake because it could potentially affect you and your coming generation. To avoid that, you need to ask these simple but vital questions before putting pen to paper:
1. Why is the owner selling the home?
It is a vital question to ask before buying a home because it can potentially unravel a lot about the property or the neighbourhood. There are various reasons a homeowner would want to move: they need more space for a growing family, has to relocate for a new job, has to move due to a major life event, or downsize for retirement. You need to understand reasons why the owner is selling the property since it might help you get a better deal. Also, it could possibly act as a negotiating point mainly when the seller is looking for a quick move.
2. What’s my housing budget like?
Financing is one of the most critical factors to pay attention to when buying a home. As a potential buyer, you need to estimate how much your budget would look like because it influences your decision on whether to save up or look for financiers. It also helps you avoid getting into debt or financiers taking the property back. In fact, this question is more key because of additional costs involved. These costs include property taxes, homeowners’ insurance, maintenance, and renovation costs.
3. What are similar homes in the market selling for?
Before finally settling on the property you had always dreamt of, you need to check the market price of the piece of real estate- How much do similar homes would cost. With that, you put yourself in a negotiating position with the home seller. Also, it helps you avoid paying more for less.
4. Is the land freehold or leasehold?
Apart from just buying the home, you need to consider the land on which the property is built. What type of land is it- does it have a freehold title or a leasehold title? A freehold title gives absolute ownership of the land for life and has no restrictions on the use of the land and occupation. Leasehold title, on the other hand, gives the buyer interest in the piece of land for a specific period of time (usually 99 years) and is subject to payment of fees to the local or national government. Ensure that you have the type of title that you prefer.
5. What is the condition of the home?
Before making the decision on your dream property, ensure to check the condition of the property. Is the property new? Is the property renovated? Does the property need renovation? You need to ask these questions because they put you in a negotiating position with the seller.
6. What is the neighbourhood like?
The last of questions to ask when buying a home is about the neighbourhood. Apart from just the financing, costs, and land issues, you need to have a clear picture of what the neighbourhood is like in terms of security and convenience. Is the area safe? Are there basic amenities and services such as schools, hospitals, and shops? Is the area accessible? Is it prone to natural disasters such as floods? These are just some of the questions you need to have answers to before breaking the bank for a new home.