So you want to buy a property?
Wondering where to start?
Start at the beginning! – buying your first home is often a journey of discovery.
Some might say it is a journey full of hidden surprises and some of them not that nice for the ill informed.
Here are a few things to consider when making a wish list to buy your first home –
Check with your Mortgage Broker or bank whether you will qualify for a loan.
Make sure you have the required deposit and necessary solicitor’s fees.
Know where you want to live- close to the city, train and bus route, or outer suburbs
What are your expectations of amenities you want close by – supermarket, schools, etc?
How many bedrooms do you need?
Do you want a large or small garden?
Is a garage important, or will off street parking suffice?
Is the property in a flood risk zone or is there any history of earthquake damage?
Are the boundaries easy to see, or should you engage a surveyor to point them out?
Are there any large developments nearby, or any proposed in the near future?
If the property is rented, what is the term of the lease, and rental ?
If the property is vacant, is their a rental appraisal available?
Is there any sign of termite activity, or water damage?
Does the property have adequate natural light?
How many bathrooms do you need?
What sort of roofing material is on the roof and what condition is it in?
When was the property built?
Check the records of the property at the local council to make sure everything is in order.
Make your offer subject to a “building inspection” in order to know of any future expenditure required
# Important if the property is not structurally sound or has some defects, make sure you investigate fully.
If you are buying a unit or apartment, make sure you read all the disclosures and Body Corporate information.
If the property is cross leased, check the “Flats Plan” for irregularities.
Check if you are allowed pets if buying an apartment or flat.
If you are unsure of anything, ask the Real Estate salesperson or Buyers advocate.
When you are searching for a property, if you have seen 20 properties and then ask a friend to view with you, for their advice as to the price, remember that they will not be the market expert – They might not have seen the same 20 properties that you are comparing it with.
It is far better for you to become a self made expert in the market, comparing apples with apples in each area.
That way you won’t be disappointed when you listen to comments made by people who have not seen the same number of properties (or those properties that you are comparing the one you like with).
Many times a loving relative has inadvertently dashed the hopes of a would be first time buyer by giving their opinion on price, when that relative has not been looking at property for a good many years and of course is not up with current market values.
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