Make your move less stressful


If you are moving to a new city, planning your move can significantly reduce the stress associated with moving house and city. Buying in an area that you know nothing about can be daunting; you may not know which neighbourhoods are good, where the best schools and universities are and your new home’s location to amenities and shopping centres.

Go online:

Research neighbourhoods online, so you know can get a feel for the sort of area you want to live in. To help this process along, try some of these tips:

  • Google the various neighbourhoods in the city you will be moving to
  • Do a search to see if there are any articles, reviews or blogs written about that area.
  • Once you have narrowed your search down, find out the location of your new neighbourhood to landmarks you may know in the city
  • If you don’t know any landmarks, look some up. This can give you an idea of where you are in relation to parks, shopping centres and other interesting places.
  • Look at what your route to work will be like; you may find the perfect neighbourhood, but you probably don’t want to drive an hour to get to work.
  • Determine house prices in various areas and see what people have to say about these areas and the facilities in them in online reviews – sites like Yelp are very helpful. You can even look at something like Trip Advisor which may have information on the neighbourhood you will be staying in.

Talk to Real Estate Agents

Agents can be a wealth of information about what a neighbourhood is really like. House prices might be great in the area you want to stay in, but is there a reason for that? Below are some tips for finding your home:

  • Find several real estate agents that you want to contact and ask them questions about the neighbourhood, crime in areas, where they would recommend looking in your price range, schools and other facilities in the area and why they would recommend it
  • If you are moving overseas, make sure you know what costs are involved with transfer fees, agent fees and any other hidden costs.

Find out about rates and costs

Different neighbourhoods often have different costs associated with living there. In London for example, people pay council tax – this can vary greatly from one side of a street to another, depending on what borough the city determines your home to be in. Similarly, in South Africa we pay rates. These can differ from city to city, and within suburbs of cities. You should therefore attempt to find out the rates of various neighbourhoods in the city, as this may be a factor in determining where you want to live.

Pick a place:

Once you have selected a neighbourhood, you can then find estate agents within that area. The estate agents you have already connected with might have a branch within the area you want to buy in, or you may have to do another search for agents in the area you want to buy in. You should interview the agents to get a sense of their personality, whether you trust them and how helpful they are. You may also be able to find reviews of the estate agents or their agencies online. Sites like in South Africa are great for finding complaints or compliments about companies. Local agents also have information on your chosen area that is not readily available on the Internet, such as:

  • Recent comparable sales.
  • Average per-square-foot cost.
  • Recent crime statistics
  • Average house prices in that area




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About BetterLife Home Loans

Since 2003 BetterLife Home Loans has been SA’s No.1 Bond Originator, handling the entire home loan application process on your behalf – free of charge! Our aim is still to source the best interest rate for you by submitting your home loan application to all the major banks. There is no easier way to apply for a Bond or Home Loan in South Africa!

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