Sooner or later there comes a time when most people decide they have been renting for long enough and it may be time to finally take the plunge and buy. Buying a new apartment in Dubai or a house in any other major city is a big financial decision and probably one of the very biggest a lot of people will ever have to make. It can also be a very exciting time for a lot of people so the risk of getting carried away and jumping in before doing the required due diligence is a reality for far too many buyers. So, what should you look for before buying a new apartment?
Let’s have a look at some of the most important things you need to consider before you even think of signing that sales contract.
What facilities and amenities are in or nearby?
Is the apartment building close to shops, public transport, parks, hospitals, schools, work, gym, etc. Think of things that are important to you and you would want nearby and make sure you find out if those are in fact easily accessible.
The age and condition of the building?
When was the building built and what is its general condition? Are the facilities clean and in good working order or do they look a little dated and in need of repair? The condition of a buildings common areas is usually a good indication of the build quality as well as what you can expect in the future.
Can you make any alterations to the apartment?
Painting the walls and adding new flooring is never usually a problem but are you free to make any more serious alterations to your property? Are there restrictions in place and, if so, what exactly are they? Typical restrictions can range from the obvious (not being able to remove internal walls) to more minor ones, such as ensuring you keep the same style and colour of the front door.
Is it safe?
You don’t only need to check the area for safety but also the building itself. What are the security measures currently in place, can anyone walk into the building? Are there any security cameras or security guards on hand?
What are the service charges?
You need to know exactly service charge you’ll pay to own the property. What are the rates and how is the total amount calculated? What exactly do the services charges cover and how often are these costs reviewed or increased? If buying for an investment high service charges can have a huge effect on your return on investment especially if this is something you failed to take into consideration.
Does the apartment come with a car park?
Is designated car parking provided and do you have to pay extra for it? Check with the seller of the apartment and also check the Title Deed to ensure it mentions the car park if one is in fact included. If there is no parking available than ensure to speak with building management and see if any options are available for rent.
What if any developments are being built nearby?
This is especially important for apartments located in new communities where the possibility of more construction is not only likely but probably. Speak to the master developer and have a close look at the building location and its surrounding to identify potential locations for new buildings. If there is a whole bunch of empty land plots around your building than there is a very high chance these will be built on sooner or later. Find out if you may suffer from a loss of views or natural light. Any new construction may also involve road closures, so you need to get an understanding of what the effects of any developments will be.
These are just a handful of questions you need to ask before putting pen to paper and buying a new apartment. Research is key and whilst it isn’t always fun it is an absolute must to ensure you get the apartment you want and deserve.