The Ultimate Checklist for a Smart Purchase

Exciting News! You’re ready to buy a property! Whether it’s your first home purchase or your 10th, deciding on a property could be the difference between setting yourself up nicely for the future or at worst, going backwards.


Start with the Essentials

Is the property safe? Look out for potentially hazardous or defective features.

A building and pest inspection carried out by a qualified inspector should determine the condition of the property. You require a thorough report and advice from the inspector as to whether there are major defects, and if so are they repairable?


Location. Location. Location.

 This is such vital criteria of your search, we mention it repetitively. You’ve probably heard the saying, smart buying is to purchase the worst home in the best street. Although this doesn’t sound so glamorous, it is wise advice. You can always make improvements to a home, but you can’t change the location. Blue chip locations are always more sought after and generally appreciate in value at a more rapid rate than less desirable areas. Do your Homework; sit outside the property at different times of the day to determine activity in the street. If it is a street that’s not so desirable, visit the local police station to ask if it’s a violent neighbourhood. I was close to putting an offer in on my 1st home, only to find out from the local police officer that there was a needle exchange a few doors up. Needless to say, I didn’t proceed with that purchase.


Street Presence

Is the exterior of the home well presented? If not, is it redeemable? This is an important factor for re-sale. Unattractive homes are much less sought after than those that are more ascetically pleasing.  We are living in a vane society, where many people place value on aesthetics, the property market is no different.


Interior Features

The obvious to look out is;

  • Paintwork
  • Condition of flooring
  • Lighting; is there ample natural light?
  • State of roof/ceiling
  • Ample storage


Less conspicuous features;

  • Electrical works
  • Windows; do they open easily?
  • Security
  • Doors; do they open easily?
  • Plumbing
  • Insulation
  • Mould
  • Ventilation
  • Vermin



Is the kitchen user friendly? Is there ample storage or provision for extra storage?

Is the fridge cavity the right size? (Although, it makes me laugh when I see buyers measure the cavity, only to realise their fridge won’t fit and base their decision to purchase on this conclusion.) Pantry size is also important.



Is there a bathtub? If not, is there enough room to put one? Is it an open plan bathroom or more desirably, private? Is it fully tiled? What are the condition of tiles? Are you getting good water pressure?


Yard Size

Is the yard the size you’re after? You really don’t want to compromise on this pre-requisite as chances are if you do, you’ll never be truly happy at this home.


Car Accommodation

 With children staying in the family home for longer than ever before, this feature is becoming one of the most sought after pre-requisites in a buyers search criteria. The more provision for secure parking, the better. This is also an important re-sale feature, making for a more desirable property.


Amanda Charles – Kaye Charles Real Estate