With government policy and a market that has cooled in recent times, the opportunities for first home buyers is really exciting. The dream of buying your first home is becoming a reality. There are however so many factors to look out for before you raise that nervous hand before Auction or making a bid during the private sale process. As pre-purchase building inspectors, we guide and help buyers have seen firsthand the dos and don’ts at this time. If you prepare well you have every chance of getting what you want and at the right price.
- Getting a loan. Rule 1 shop around. Finance is very competitive so make the financers work for you. Gone are the days where you walk into your local big 4 banks and hope that they will loan you the money. There are 100s of lenders out there who want your business. Our advice is to get a mortgage broker to do the work for you. Be honest with them about your situation and they can tailor the right loan for you.
- Sort out your debts- If you have already got any large debts, especially high-interest debts like credit card debts, student loans, focus on paying off these loans first. If you’re already in debt you might find it harder to get a home loan approved, or you may not be able to borrow quite as much. A mortgage broker will tell you what to pay off first to help your application so ask them.
- Get home-loan pre-approval- Before you even start looking at buying your first home, get pre-approval from your broker. This will not only give you confidence that you’re looking at the right type of properties, but it will enable you to act quickly when you find ‘the one’. On so many occasions we as building inspectors have completed a report for our clients, house in good condition only to find that their finance has fallen through. This can be heartbreaking for the buyer.
- Do your research –First home buyers who stick to their budget and do the research when buying the property are less likely to suffer from any stress and regret later. When it comes time to make an offer, know your area and what property is going for in the current market. It’s easy these days to do your research. Start with Realestate.com and Domain.
- Get a good conveyancer. Conveyancers are your legal representation. They support you and let you know what to look out for in terms of the title and the documentation. They make sure you get a smooth transaction and keep the sales agents honest! Engage a conveyancer early as you may need them without much notice when you need to give them time to review your documentation. Again, as inspectors, we have been at the stage where we are inspecting the property and clients are asking us questions where they should have been putting these questions to a conveyancer well before they ask us.
- Caveat emptor (home buyers, beware!)- Pre-purchase building inspections are a critical investment in any home. Representing just a tiny fraction of the cost of your purchase a pre-purchase inspection they ensure you get what you pay for. Our reports identify Safety hazards, Major structural defects, and Minor defects. So structural problems and items like termite damage can be identified before you sign on the dotted line. Make sure you make on offer ‘Subject to a building inspection.’ If we do find any Termite or Major structural problems you can pull out of the sale or renegotiate and get a better price. The reports are also fully insured so you are covered and have that peace of mind.
Buying your first home is an exciting time and the process can be fun if you do the right preparation. Contact your local Jims Building Inspector and they can help you through the process.