How to find the perfect home when you're relocating

Written by
November 18, 2018

When you’re moving to an entirely new area, there are a lot more complications when it comes to finding a new home than there would be if you were moving just a mile down the road.

Zoom995 understands how daunting the prospect of relocating can be for our clients, especially when they have no family or personal connections in the area, which is why we want to provide as much advice as possible about how to make the process simpler. Below are some tips we’ve put together to help you.

Remember, if you’re moving to the South East including Crawley and the surrounding areas, Zoom995 are always on hand to show you around and give you advice and information. You can contact one of our friendly team on 0333 358 3095.

1. Find a reputable estate agent

The first thing to do when you realise you need to make a big move is to get some help and advice.  You will want a well-known, local estate agent who can give you sound advice about all aspects of living in the area, not just knowledge of the housing market itself.

They will need to have experience in relocation. At Zoom995, we are happy to gather all the information about local schools, parks, restaurants, shops and supermarkets, nightlife and crime rates, or anything else you might want to know, to help you in the search for your perfect home.

An estate agent will need to act as a local guide during the process, and you may end up spending a lot of time with them, so it’s important to hire someone you have a good rapport with and can trust.

You should always verify that your new agent is a good fit for you. You can start by looking at their online presence and reading their reviews. The best way to get a feel of whether or not you’ll get along is to speak to them, even if you can only do it over the phone.

It’s important to tell your estate agent what you want in a house, such as how many bedrooms you’re looking for or whether you’d like a property which is detached.

If what you’re looking for is easier to pinpoint for an estate agent they can concentrate on those properties and arrange viewings for you when you can visit. If there are a couple you particularly like they may be able to show you around via Facetime or Skype!

At Zoom995 we’d be happy to do this for you. If you’re relocating to the South East, take a look at our property search to see if there’s anything that suits your needs.

2. Consider renting first

Buying a home is a huge decision and not one to be taken lightly. When planning to buy you should be looking to stay for a good few years for the financial investment to be worth it. That’s an even bigger commitment to make when you’re relocating and unfamiliar with the area, as you may find yourself unsure about your decision or wanting to move away again.

You could always make the decision to rent first until you’re sure you want to stay. It would also ease some of the pressure when it comes to looking at houses, as you can always concentrate on the property search once you’ve already moved to the area, making it much simpler.

Renting a property gives you a chance to get to know the area before making a commitment to purchasing a property, and you may find your opinions about certain elements of your new area change as time goes on.

You may wish to stay in the general area, but have decided that a particular part of town is where you’d like to buy your new home. You may not be able to figure this out without having lived there. It also means you can take your time to find the right property, rather than hurriedly buying a property you’re not certain about so you can get moved before you start your new job or before your children need to start school.

3. Create a budget

Consider how much your family will be bringing in financially once you have moved. Are you earning more money at your new job? Is life in general cheaper where you’re moving to? If you’re moving away from somewhere like London, and if you’re moving further north in the UK, you’ll find the cost of living is generally cheaper.

If you’re moving further south, it becomes more expensive. Consider your needs and create two budgets, one for the long term and then a budget for how much you can afford for your new property.

Make sure you’ve looked up properties in the area to see how much they generally sell for. You may be able to get more for your money in your new area, or you may need to prioritise what you need and downgrade or downsize where you can. Could you do some of the DIY on the property yourself?

You’ll also need to consider how much your current property might sell for, and how long it may take to sell your home.

4. Do your own research

Even if you have an estate agent who can give you advice about the area you’re relocating to and show you around, you’ll want to do your own research. After all, you know what you need and what you want or don’t want better than anyone else.

The search for your new home will be made much easier if you have done your research and can pinpoint a small area, road or particular part of the town or city you’d like to move to most. That way, when it comes to viewing houses you can be a lot more strategic.

As far as what to research, you will first want to look up potential neighbourhoods. Here are our top tips:

  • Why not join Facebook, Instagram or Twitter groups dedicated to the area or online parent groups if you have children? That way, you can post in the group and ask for advice from others about the nicest areas, the areas with the best value for money or the most convenient areas. You can ask which schools are the best and where’s good to go out to eat or for entertainment. You never know, you may even make your first friend from the area by getting out there, even if it’s just through social media.
  • Head to the local authority’s website for information about the area, as well as community websites run by those living in the area.
  • If you have children, Netmums has lots of information on clubs and activities in the area to entertain your little ones. You can always get in touch with people running the groups.
  • You can find out how many crimes have been reported in a neighbourhood by going to
  • Phil Spencer’s Property Report helps you to get to know the area you’re moving to, with information on everything from schools to neighbours.

5. Plan a visit

Ultimately, the best way to get a sense of your new area is to see it in person. Schedule a trip to visit your new town or city before you make the big move. It can seem inconvenient, but it really is the best way to get to know the area, and also to stop you and your family feeling so overwhelmed. You’ll sleep easier knowing you’ve at least seen where you’re going to live.

If it’s possible, stay for you to stay a few days in the area or nearby, see if an estate agent can show you around several houses while you’re there. By this point, you’ll have had a few discussions with your estate agent and they’ll be able to pinpoint a few properties they think you’ll like that are within your budget. You never know, you might find ‘the one’ and come home with an accepted offer!

If you’re looking at relocating to the South East, get in touch with Zoom995 today on 0333 358 3095. You can also ‘meet the team’ online.

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