#1 Examine the apartment thoroughly
Is your flat located in new or old apartment? What are the maintenance costs? Is the apartment structurally safe? How strong is the noise insulation? If you have access to the basement, make sure to check it out, so you have better knowledge of the overall quality of construction and dampness. If it’s a new apartment, you can ask the investor or the construction company manager to tell you more about the type of material they used for the apartment, and your flat.
If you’re buying an older flat, then check out what work was done. If you notice recent renovations in the flat, find out why they were made, what materials and solutions were used. Perhaps the suspended ceiling hides the real ceiling that is always wet, while the new wallpapers conceal cracks in the walls?
#2 Spare yourself some money for shifting
We know that you are excited to go big or feel like home, but this is not the time to splurge on furniture, to buy decadent decor or to throw away everything old and replace it for everything new. Keep some money aside for the inevitable bundle of expenses that you’re going to discover when you move in.
You’ll probably need some furniture–even if you buy super cheap stuff, you’ll still need some. You may need electronics. You may need minor things for small home renovations.
#3 Renovation is expensive
If you are buying an old flat, you will need quite a lot of money for repairs. In old flats, you need to replace everything, from installations to flooring, windows and plumbing. Repairs will not only make your old flat into a beautiful place to live, but they will also increase the value of your flat.
Remember, it’s more important to repair the wiring and plumbing than to get expensive furniture, so hire an expert to help you with repairs and save some cash for the moving in day.
#4 Look beyond wallpapers and paint
We’ve seen this many times. Buyers find a right flat, but they are thrown away by furniture, decorations, and wall color. They often say that they don’t like the “environment.” Considering that you will probably renovate the entire flat, paint the walls and get new furniture, you need to look beyond what’s there.
It would be ideal to hire an architect who will draw a detailed outline of the flat, and plan your living space. You can also use the City Expert floorplan to understand the real value.
While you’re already there, looking beyond paint, make sure that the decorations aren’t covering for something bigger underneath, such as leaky ceilings, or broken balcony fence.
#5 Give attention to documents you are signing
Now, this goes without saying, but you need to read everything you sign carefully and to understand everything that you agreed to. Your lawyer and real estate agent can help you understand the entire home buying process, but you need to understand where are you moving in.