Changes to society and the aftermath of the economic recession mean that around the world, it is increasingly common for people to search for apartments and condos rather than detached family homes. The same is true in Thailand and throughout much of Asia. It is still possible, however, to find a detached house through DDProperty or other reliable real estate websites without signing off on an unaffordable mortgage. Here are just a few tips to get you started:
- Take Your Time and Search Around
It is tempting when doing some real estate hunting to jump onto the first ideal property you look at in your excitement to set up a new home or out of fear that someone else will make a better offer. Even when looking at the property itself, it is all too common for buyers to breeze through and miss everything of importance. A report by ThisisMoney found that house hunters spend an average of only half an hour looking at a potential candidate before they commit to buying. While it is unwise to delay a decision on a sought after property, taking some time to investigate the market, see which properties are the most affordable, and find out if the property you are planning to invest in is ideal, you can avoid becoming attached to a mortgage you can’t realistically pay off.
- Find the Most Affordable Neighbourhoods
In many ways, the neighbourhood is an even bigger deciding factor than the structure itself. By being flexible on which neighbourhood you choose, you can find a detached house for a much better price. If you work from home, for example, you won’t need a neighbourhood too close to transport links. If you don’t mind travelling a little further for your weekly shopping than you could find a more affordable place in a more remote location. Make a list of the things you absolutely need from your neighbourhood (safety will obviously be the most pressing concern) and be flexible on everything else when looking for a new place to live in.
- Consider Older Houses
Looking around on property websites, you can see that the vast majority of new builds are for luxury condos which are out of many people’s price ranges. While this means there are proportionally fewer detached houses on the online listings, it does also mean that there are a lot of older properties that are usually much cheaper than brand new builds. This doesn’t necessarily mean the structure will be dilapidated. Even those that are only five or ten years old are much more affordable than brand new offerings. If you are worried about excessive repair bills, hire a surveyor before buying to look into any repair works needed. If the maintenance isn’t excessive, the cost will still be significantly cheaper than buying a brand new place.
- Avoid Space You Won’t Use
If you want to get the most out of your mortgage payments, then Forbes recommends buying a property with only the rooms and spaces that you will be using frequently. It may be nice to have a spare room for guests but if you realistically won’t use it often then it may be best to go for a home without a spare bedroom and invest in a fold-out sofa instead. A home office is a nice addition, but could you just as easily set up your workstation in the bedroom or living room? Even a garden can be sacrificed if you have an open park space near your area where you can relax instead. If all you really want is a place to sit in the sun and enjoy the occasional BBQ party then a small patio or a communal recreation space will likely be enough. Ask yourself these questions when looking at properties to prevent yourself from overspending on luxuries.
- Rent Out a Room
This option isn’t for everyone but if you don’t mind taking in a lodger, it could give you the financial boost you need to afford a slightly larger or newer residence than you couldn’t otherwise consider. Once you have paid off your mortgage or gained enough capital to do so, you can stop renting out the room and convert it into whatever you want. If you have any other space in your place that you aren’t using, such as a garage, you might also be able to rent it out to somebody, for instance, a craftsman looking for a workspace.
While it is generally accepted that some sacrifices must be made when buying a more affordable residence, it is still possible to find a dream home that won’t leave you in a bad financial situation. By shopping around, considering all of your options, and cutting out the unnecessary luxuries, you can find the right detached house for your budget.