Buying a property is an incredibly costly investment. You will probably have to save money for decades or take out a huge bank loan to pay for your investment. Given the high cost and risks involved, it is necessary to carry out a proper due diligence on the property market and the property itself to ensure that you are not making a dud purchase. The property you are buying must be in the best condition before you sign the contract and proceed with the purchase.

Here are some steps and precautions that you can undertake to ensure your property investments are as smooth as possible:

Look at the location and the property market

Before you focus on the “micro” aspects of your property investments, focus on the bigger picture such as the property market and the location of the property. How has the market been performing recently? What are some of the local shops? Take a tour of the neighborhood and take a look on the surrounding area. Try to gage the potential of the neighborhood and the property market.

Educate yourself about property acquisition
If you are doing this for the first time, it might be prudent to educate yourself about property acquisitions before you plunge into the market. Having good information beforehand allows you to make investment calls with some clarity. Without good market intelligence and knowledge of the real estate acquisition, you are most likely going to trip yourself during the process considering the many pitfalls you will face in real estate acquisitions.

Get some help

An easier route that you may also undertake when it comes to property investments is seeking help or advice from professional realtors in your target market. There are many advantages of entrusting your property investment with professionals. They are generally better versed in the process and have good insight into the local property market. They can offer you great advice on the best performing properties to invest in.

Carry out professional property inspections

This is an almost routine step in all real estate transactions so don’t forget to pay close attention to this process. Hire an independent and professional property inspection specialist that will assess the condition of property and identify faults or issues that may prove costly a few years down the line. Some of the areas that a property inspector will focus on include safety issues, structural issues, pest infestations, construction problems among others.

Focus on the fundamentals

Don’t be too hooked on the glam features of the property that you forget to factor in the things that really matter in property. Look at the fundamentals that will guarantee the durability, structural integrity and the marketability of your property such as the architectural style, room for future extensions and conversions, size of rooms and corridors, total floor area among others. Don’t fall for the shiny things syndrome.

Get all information about the property

Get a full property profile before you put your money in. If you are buying through a realtor, make sure you ask them the right questions about the history of the property such as past sales, median market price and the duration it takes to sell a property in the market. If you are going to check out the property, be sure to look at the right things: the fundamentals of the property.