Tips for First-Home Buyers

So you have decided to take the plunge and purchase your first property – congratulations! In my view, owning your own home is one of the most significant and satisfying purchases you will ever make.  Although the initial outlay may seem like a lot, by paying off a mortgage each month you are actually building equity and essentially setting yourself up for the rest of your life. 

The first step to buying your first property is to save the money for a deposit.  Depending on your current spending patterns, this could be quite an easy or difficult task.  There are countless tips on how to cut back on your expenditure, including creating a budget, using cash instead of credit and paying off your credit card in full each month to avoid interest charges, however you will often find that what is really required is actually an attitude change. 

Simply reminding yourself of your end goal every time you find yourself tempted to make an unnecessary purchase can do wonders for your savings.  For example, instead of purchasing that new dress or piece of electronic equipment, imagine that property waiting for you.

To make saving that little bit easier, first home buyers should try to do as much research as possible regarding the various government tax initiatives available.  These may involve grants as the property is your first, or incentives for buying off the plan.  Each state will have different information available.   

When buying a property it is essential to be aware of all the costs involved beyond the property itself.  There are usually legal fees, home loan application fees and stamp duty costs that must be paid and thus factored into your budget.  Be aware that these costs may have an impact on the amount you can afford to spend on the actual property. 

When you finally find the ideal property for you, make sure you have the relevant inspections conducted prior to bidding at auction or making an offer privately.  Believe me, even if you think that the property is perfect now, this view may change two or three years down the track when you become aware of a significant flaw that requires fixing at considerable expense.  If anything, having a property and/or pest inspection will give you peace of mind and if there is a fault it may allow you to negotiate a lower sale price. 

When it comes to purchasing the property, you can either make an offer privately or bid at auction.  In both cases, try to find out as much as you can about the property and try not to get involved in bidding wars where you end up paying way beyond the property’s value (yes, these can sometimes occur in the private sale process as well as at auctions).  Remember, there will always be another property to buy. 

Although the process of buying your first home can sometimes prove to be a stressful time, try to enjoy it.  You have worked hard and may have sacrificed much to save the money to get to this point - you should be very proud of your new purchase.   


Posted by Charles Tarbey on 26/10/2010 at 10:50 AM | Categories: First Home Buyers -


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