When most open homes are only 30 minutes long, you need to know what to do in order to make sure that you make the most of your visit.
Leading up to the open home:
• Browse the EVES website and make a list of all of the open homes in the area you would like to visit.
• Ask around. People are always happy to let you know about their experiences and what they’ve learned from buying homes in the past.
• Check out the open home checklist at Settled.govt.nz for anything else that you might not have thought of.
On the way to the property:
• Take in the sights of the neighbourhood. What are the other homes in the street like? Are there schools and shops nearby that could make life easier?
• Check out the driveway. Are you happy to have a shared driveway?
When you’re at the property:
Aside from the number of rooms and the size of the backyard that first grabbed your attention, there are other things that you need to check out.
• Make sure you ask the salesperson questions about the home such as whether there is double glazing, or if the house is insulated. When it’s potentially the biggest purchase of your life, no question is a bad one.
• Check for the obvious signs that there could be something wrong – mold, peeling paint, stained carpet, and ceilings.
• How much storage is there? Some houses have minimal in-built cupboards
• Look for light switches and powerpoints. Are there enough?
• Imagine how your furniture will look and how it may fit into the rooms.
• Use your senses. Can you hear any sounds? Is it overly warm or cold? Are there any smells?
On your way out:
What’s your gut feeling about the home? Do you need to see it again or have you struck it off your list?
If you’ve fallen head over heels then you should book a private viewing with the agent, then it might be time to start some serious due diligence and call a professional to inspect it properly.