Buying your first property is a major decision, whether it be a home or an investment. We take a look at some of the key features to consider when buying your first property.
1. Where do you want to buy?
Creating a shortlist of potential areas to buy is an important first step. Knowing where you want to buy will allow you to research median prices for properties in the area.
2. How much are properties in the area really worth?
Working out a reasonable price for a particular property isn’t as hard as it once was. Data sites enable users to analyse current and past sale prices and listing values. Sites such as The Real Estate Institute of Victoria, PropertyData.com.au and Residex provide past sales prices and listing prices, which allows you narrow down price ranges for properties you are considering.
Stories in local newspapers can provide additional information about property prices. Between property web sites and local papers, you can get an idea of the types of properties on the market. Attending a range of open houses and auctions is also a valuable way to determine the level of interest in properties in the area.
Although new legislation in Victoria is aimed to preventing real estate agents from underquoting, conducting your own research is essential to ensure you don’t pay more for a property than its worth.
3. Which house is right for me?
Deciding to make an offer on a property, or deciding to bid at auction, is one of the most nerve-wracking parts of buying your first property.
To make sure you are purchasing the right property, consider the following:
Which property best fits your needs and lifestyle?
If you’re buying a home to live in, would you prefer a house, townhouse or unit? Knowing which type of property you want to purchase will narrow down the number of properties you need to research and inspect.
If you're purchasing the property as an investment, it is important to look at recent rental statistics and prices. Develop an understanding of what local tenants are looking for, and know how much you can reasonably expect to rent the property for.
What lifestyle options are nearby?
Many people forget to consider the importance of local facilities and amenities when purchasing a property. Living close to train stations, freeway entrances and shopping districts will improve your lifestyle. These features can also be lucrative if you do your research, and purchase before amenities are built nearby. A trip to the local council may reveal an area you had previously overlooked is receiving a major upgrade or new resources, and present a buying opportunity.
4. Should I buy a new or established property?
This is a question often asked, yet neither option is necessarily better or worse. To work out which is the best option for you, consider price, condition and future sale options to help narrow down your choices.
||Settlement times vary, and unforeseen events can delay your move-in date.
||Negotiated at the time of sale with very little chance of delay.
||Each state offers a stamp duty concession for first home buyers if you meet certain criteria. Concessions are generally larger if you purchase off the plan.
||Stamp duty concessions are often lower if you are buying an established property.
||You may have the ability to choose colours, features and appliances.
||You are limited to the existing style and inclusions of the property.
Still struggling to decide? Give the team at Wise Real Estate Advice a call on 1300 009 473 to clarify your options and make an informed decision.
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