Australia. The sunburnt country. The land down under.
Well, living there is appealing to many, whether young and old, and whether you live there already or not.
The allure of bright and sunny weather, affordable housing options, and plenty of business opportunities and career options are good enough reasons.
It’s a welcoming country. And they need people because even the Kangaroos need some humans to throw punches.
Add a good quality lifestyle and a low cost of living into this mix, and you can’t deny its charms.
If you’ve already decided to live there, you’d need a house. And for that much investment, you should do some planning.
So, here are some things you should do first:
Build your savings
First, you need to get your finances sorted. Do a budget, identify how much you have, and how much you would need more for the first deposit.
Get a general idea about the house prices. Your goal at first should be the house deposit. You’d need to provide a 10-20% deposit to secure a home loan.
And even to avoid paying Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI), you’d need approximately 20% of the price.
Additional costs include stamp duty, legal and conveyancing fees, insurance money, and building and pest inspections.
The majority of Australian mortgages are repayment. There are, unfortunately, no self-certification loans. So, have proof of income ready at your disposal if you’d be going to apply for a mortgage.
Search for the house
This is a tricky business, as it always is.
Buying a house is no joke. It needs thoughtful considerations, agreement of the whole family, and the likeness factor.
Consider whether you prefer new-build over resale properties. Newly built properties have far fewer legal issues, and resale homes offer a far greater choice.
Keep in mind the weather you’d like. Some places in Australia get exhaustingly hot during the summer months, and others can have rainy seasons longer than expected.
The major cities such as Sydney, Perth, Brisbane, and Melbourne are the cosmopolitan modern-age megacities. If you’re a migrant, they are the best places for employment opportunities. Gold Coast and Queensland can be your best bets for those who love the seas. And for country-lovers, there is no scarcity of that in Australia.
Also, consider access to public transport, services, shops, schools, and the neighborhood’s atmosphere.
Consult real estate companies like HDRE Real Estate & Strata to find houses on sale and know about the area and the property market performance there.
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Inspect the property
It’s easy to get behind your gut feeling as soon as you step foot inside the right house.
But don’t only depend on that. Properly inspect the property, check the whole structure and look around the locality.
If you can, get a qualified building inspector to get an assessment. They will find the flaws and provide you with the remedy too.
The main things to look for are:
- Damp or mold spots on the ceilings, the walls, and skirting. Get your eyes close to the places with fresh paint jobs.
- Saggy ceilings and out-of-shape walls.
- Fittings of the doors and windows.
- Check the taps for water flow.
- Check under the carpets to know the floors’ condition.
- Take a look at the Hot Water system.
- Check the lights and the fuse box.
- If possible, take a look at the roof.
- The gutters and drainage.
- Look for cracks on the walls outside.
Get a home loan
The most significant thing to look for in a good home loan is the interest rate.
Any home loan is a long-term debt, and that’s why every fraction of the percentage matters, as they eventually add up to a huge sum of money.
Consult at least two lenders to see their loan options and are they personalized for you or not. Of course, you can take the help of a broker, too, to get a better deal.
You can consider getting a loan pre-approval from the lender. Pre-approval can last for 3 to 6 months. It shows you’re eligible to apply for the loan but doesn’t commit or force you into a loan. It gives you the freedom of setting any price you see as affordable.
Besides interest rates, know about the term of the loan, whether you can redraw, the availability of additional repayments, whether there are any conditions attached, and how often the interest is calculated.
There are two options in interest rates – fixed and variable. In simple terms, if you’re concerned about budget, go for a fixed rate.
And if you want a lower interest rate and don’t mind a bit of risk, then go for the variable rate.
Buying a house is a dream for many of us and the most life-altering one.
It’s a daunting task too. There are just so many decisions and so many things to look for. But the only weapon for you is RESEARCH.
The four things above are at the crux of the puzzle.
Solve them, and you’ll find your house.