6 Things Home Buyers Should Know

Buying a home is likely one of the biggest and most complex purchases you’ll ever make. To ensure it’s a great investment, it’s essential to take your time, gather as much knowledge and insight as possible, carefully follow the necessary steps before signing on the dotted line. In this article, we tackle 6 things home buyers should know.

Thoroughly evaluate the types of property that are truly within your budget

Before you begin exploring properties or suburbs, it’s crucial to determine how much you can genuinely afford—not just the maximum amount you can borrow, but the maximum monthly payment you’re comfortable with. Home loan repayments, along with the additional costs of homeownership, will significantly impact your monthly budget more than rental payments do.

Plan your budget around your home loan repayments (use our calculator for an estimate) and try living on this new budget for three months, setting aside money each month for maintenance. This helps ensure your mortgage doesn’t become a financial burden, allowing you to maintain your desired lifestyle.

Remember to account for upfront costs when purchasing property. Once you’ve done this, apply for pre-approval so you can search for properties with confidence and intent, rather than just hope.

Thoroughly investigate the local area, and then continue to gather even more information

When it comes to buying property, you can never be too informed. As home buyers, take your time to gather as much information as possible about the suburbs you’re considering. Speak with real estate agents and your mortgage broker to understand the dynamics of the local market. Learn how properties are valued, as the valuation can often differ significantly from the listed price. This comprehensive knowledge will empower home buyers to make more informed decisions and better assess the true value of potential properties.

Take the time to uncover any potential issues with the property

Once you’ve identified a property you’re interested in, ensure it has no hidden issues. Check for mold and animal-related odors, and tap on walls to see if they sound hollow. Inspect appliances like the dryer and dishwasher for signs of pests. Test the toilet to ensure it flushes properly, verify the functionality of the heating and air-conditioning, check the vents above the fireplace, and assess the water pressure. Confirm that all appliances work and that any additional structures, such as a studio, have proper council approval. Ask questions and don’t hesitate to inquire further.

Work with professionals

Given the magnitude of this purchase, it’s wise to assemble a team of experts. Engage a meticulous, licensed home inspector to identify any potential issues that might lead to expensive repairs down the line. Collaborate with a mortgage broker to tailor your financing to suit your requirements, and consult a financial adviser for insights into homeownership realities. To prevent conflicts of interest, ensure your lawyer does not represent the seller as well.

Don’t give in to pressure

Keep in mind that real estate agents are skilled salespeople representing the seller’s interests. They often aim for a fast sale at the highest price possible. They might pressure you to make an offer quickly by suggesting others are interested. If you feel rushed, step back. Taking time to evaluate the situation objectively reduces the chance of making a decision you’ll regret.

Finding the right property may require more time than you think

Avoid being constrained by someone else’s schedule, and refrain from making commitments that could complicate matters if your property search extends beyond your initial expectations. If you’re currently renting, opt for a month-to-month agreement to ensure flexibility and the ability to move without facing penalties. This approach allows you to navigate the property hunt at your own pace without added stress or financial burdens.

In conclusion, taking a thoughtful and strategic approach to purchasing property can lead to a successful and fulfilling homeownership experience. By conducting thorough research, working with experienced professionals, and remaining patient throughout the process, you can make informed decisions that align with your goals and priorities. As home buyers, remember to stay adaptable, prioritize your financial flexibility, and trust your instincts as you go on this exciting journey of finding your dream home.