I mentioned in my ‘To-do list’ that I wanted to buy a house and understand what was going on. Well, recently, Emma and I have taken the first steps along the long and winding road to house ownership.
We started off by visiting a solicitor and an independent mortgage advisor. These visits were simply to find out about the process of house-buying, a vague timescale, the cost of the process and an estimate of how much we could afford to spend.
After that, and with some guidelines to help us start looking, we had a browse of Rightmove. This is a pretty handy website (for the tiny minority who have never heard of it) and has formed the foundation of any progress we have made so far. Through this we discovered that we couldn’t find anything within our budget that fitted our criteria in Emma’s hometown of Chelmsford. As a result, and influenced by the worst-case-scenario of me transferring to one of the branches of Waitrose in Essex (better scenarios involve me finding a better paid job in Essex or London – though on the whole Waitrose is a great company to work for), we looked further away from London, along what could probably be described as the ‘A12 corridor’. Most of the places we have found that we like are in either Witham or Braintree. We eliminated a great number, and drew up a shortlist of half a dozen or so.
Next time: read all about the viewings!