Buying a property- especially for first-time buyers- can be a really serious affair. Many times, innocent first-time buyers have fallen victim to the antics of criminals who pose as middlemen or real estate agents and end up swindling them of their hard-earned money.
It is therefore imperative to get familiar with the procedures and steps that encompass buying a property in order to avoid such heartbreaking moments.
- Make enquiries
Assuming that you have seen a property you like, let’s say on a social media platform belonging to a real estate company or a realtor, making full enquiries about the property begins to make more sense. Now that you have seen a property worthy of your interest, put a call through the agent’s number attached to the property. Is the property still in the market? If the property does come with an asking price (some don’t) you’ll want to know if it is within your budget. Asking these questions gives you a general feeling that you are on track to getting your home especially if the property is within your budget.
- Schedule an Inspection.
The next step to take is to schedule an inspection. Simply stated, home inspection is an examination of the condition of a real estate property. This is a crucial step in the process as you will get to see the property by yourself. During an inspection, the realtor takes you on a tour of the property. Fix a convenient date with the agent in charge of the property.
- Property viewing.
Property viewing allows you to scrutinize the property first hand. This takes place during your inspection. You have a more visual experience of the property and can see the intricacies of the property that the pictures may have not covered. Peradventure the property has any defects that were not noticed in the pictures you can immediately spot them. Also, asking questions that pop into your mind about the property during this process is a good way to make sure you are leaving no stones unturned. Property viewing can be completed in a matter of minutes and shouldn’t take so much time.
- Schedule a Meeting with the owner
Proceeding to this next step is an indication that you are satisfied with the property after you inspected it. Scheduling a meeting with the owner of the property all but stamps in your intention as a serious buyer. Why would you come this far anyways? During the meeting, you get to meet the property owner. Basically, the purpose this serves can be split into two- negotiation and a face-to-face meeting. You may choose to negotiate the price on the property if you are up to the task.
- Document Search
You don’t want to come this far only to be swindled by some desperate impostors who staged themselves as the owners of the property. It certainly happens! Taking one more sure-footed step in ensuring that the owner genuinely owns the property may make the difference. Take a day to visit the state secretariat (for Lagos State, that’s in Alausa, Ikeja) to carry out a document search on the property. Statutorily, copies of Title deeds, Certificate of Occupancy and other important documents that lend credence to a property owner’s claims are stored here. Failure to find the documents here or the documents being registered to another name may be signs of potential danger for you. Should you find yourself in such a situation, it is advised you take more time to conduct a deeper and wider investigation. It is not always odd to find documents missing or not present at the secretariat. Yet, leaning on the side of caution is never regrettable.
- Closing the deal
This is the concluding procedure. To close the deal means to officially bring all dealings, transactions or negotiations to a close after an agreement has been reached. It involves transfer of documents and payments. Closing the deal usually does not take time, but sometimes it may, depending on factors unforeseen.