Tips, guides and useful information for first home buyers.
Buying a new home can be a daunting task. There’s a lot more to it than rocking up to an auction, paddle in hand and being handed the keys to your dream home.
1. A search buddy
The search for a new home can be long and arduous which is why it’s important to have someone who you can send links to hundreds of homes! From run down fixer-uppers to mansions you can’t afford, your search buddy is there to justify your hours of scrolling through property sites and more importantly to keep you on track. If you’re buying with someone this role is often filled by the more sensible and logical half of your partnership as they gently remind you what you can and can’t afford. It’s a thankless task that chews through hours of spare time; therefore, it should only be taken on by someone who is almost as invested in this purchase as you are.
Having a dedicated adviser helping you, rather than being passed from consultant to consultant, means that they know you, your circumstances and the best way to help into your new home. When there are hundreds of Home Loan options to choose from, a good adviser will help you determine what you do and don’t need in your loan. People’s Choice Home Loan Advisers are located in specific regions around the country giving them local knowledge of their suburbs that you can take advantage of. The team of Mobile Home Loan Advisers make it even easier for you as they can visit you at your home, your work or in branch, wherever suits you best.
3. A Real Estate Agent or two
Often real estate agents are seen as glorified sales people trying to trick you into spending more money than you can afford. But rather than seeing the people handing you brochures at open inspections as evil, treat them like a friend and think about how they can help you. For instance no one knows that a house is about to hit the market earlier than a real estate agent and so speaking to a local agent who sells regularly in the area you’re looking to buy can help you get a jump on your competition. It’s easier for a real estate agent to sell a house to someone they know is looking than to sift through hundreds of tyre kickers, so use them as the conjugate between the current owners of your future home and you.
4. A building inspector
Nothing is more heartbreaking than buying your dream home, getting ready to do your first renovation, only to be told you need to spend thousands repairing water damage which you didn’t know existed, because you failed to get a building inspection. Having a trusted builder or building inspector on call can save you thousands and help you to decide which home is right for you. When looking for your building guru it’s best to use the services of someone you know, or take recommendations from trusted friends or family members. It will be important to have the utmost confidence in their advice when you have already fallen in love with the home, only to be told that there is a major building issue right before cooling off finishes.
5. A conveyancer
Come settlement day there is only one call you will be waiting by the phone for and that’s the call from your conveyancer who gathers the paperwork, makes sure you have signed everything you need to and actually attends the settlement on your behalf. A good conveyancer will keep you updated and informed throughout the whole process from offer acceptance to that congratulations call, letting you know you’re the proud owner of a new mortgage, oh and a house! If you buy and sell regularly your conveyancer will become an ally in your home buying journey so it makes sense to choose someone you trust.
With a team of supporters cheering you on, your new home purchase is sure to be a success. It can take weeks or even months but it’s an exciting step in your life so take the time to build a support crew who will help you at every step along the way and it’s sure to be a great experience.
Trying to buy your first home? Here are some handy life hacks for beating other first home buyers and owning your first home.
It will give the buyer more certainty about having finance for the deal.
They may even give the vendor’s agent a call to settle any nerves about you being a first home-buyer.
Your home loan adviser knows the ins and outs of home loans so be sure to ask them anything you're unsure of - they may even call the vendor for you.
Everyone loves to be loved – and sometimes this might just get you past the post before anyone else gets a crack.
Look at people’s tactics first. And be on hand to put in an offer if a house gets passed in. Also listen out for the question: “Is the property on the market?” It’s the auction equivalent of “Are we serious yet?
Offer the vendor their choice of settlement date – it they are coordinating the purchase of a new home, they’re likely to love you for your flexibility.
Know what you need to avoid wasting your time: bedrooms, bathrooms, parking, transport links, amount of work needed on the property, price, facilities.
What are you looking for in your first home? Make a list of your needs and stick to them to avoid wasting time.
Ask a real estate agent for a list of recent sales in the area. This will give you an idea of the prices being paid for similar prices but also the agents selling them.
They want to sell, you want to buy. It’s a match made in heaven. Register and keep in touch with them. They will think of you first for what you want.
Agents will often contact unsuccessful purchasers if a similar property comes up. Know who they are and get you’re A-game on.
If you see a home you like, write to the owners about why you like their home. If it’s on the market, they may look beyond price as a factor for the sale. If it isn’t, they may think about it.
If you are thinking about new homes, ask the council when the next land releases are expected and which developers are responsible. Developers will call you before the signs are posted.
Looking to build your own place? Get ahead of your competition by asking for information from your local council.
Have a savings plan and stick to it. You may experience some bumps from time to time, but a consistent savings strategy backed by a fair budget will lead to better results over the long term.
Budgeting and expense tracking apps will help you understand your spending and help you stick to your plan. This discipline will carry through to owning and maintaining a home, and then upgrading.
Make the most of free apps that help you budget and manage your money.
Some apps will “round up” your expenses and transfer the additional amount to savings. If you spend $18, it may round up to $20 and send $2 to your savings account. You may not miss the $2, but it will push along your total savings that much quicker with little effort on your part.
Saving for your first home can take years, so make them count. Look for the best returns rather than leaving them in a low-rate account. After all, every dollar of interest earned is one less dollar you need to save.
Split your savings away before it hits your transaction account. If you don’t see it, you won’t miss it.
Tax returns, lottery wins, payouts – put these big windfalls directly into your savings and don’t touch them. You’ll get more interest, be closer to your goal, and can rely on your discipline to take care of the daily challenges.
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