If you're a first home-buyer, there are a few tips that we can recommend that might help you win in the real estate game - Bryce & Veronica share their insights!
Melinda and Trudi were the first twins that I've ever helped buy a property, and they were looking to buy their first home in Adelaide. But they were really nervous, and the whole real estate process was really getting the better of them before we met them.
So if you're a first home-buyer, there are a few tips that we can recommend that might help you win in the real estate game - and the first one is to understand the whole real estate process. Because it's not enough just to get online and have a look at some listings and go to the open for inspection - because there's so much more involved.
Understand the whole process.
Before you start looking for a property, go and get your finance sorted out. Go and see a mortgage broker or bank representative and find out how much you can borrow, what the repayments are going to be like, and what the likely impact of interest rises is going to be. So when you get your pre-approval, you're ready to go out and start looking at property; and when you find something you like, you're going to be a lot closer to being able to make an offer.
1) Organise finance before you start.
For nervous first-time property buyers, it's often misunderstood who the real estate agent is actually working for - now, to be clear, they're there to get the best price and conditions for their client, who's the seller. Not you as the buyer. So any information that they give you in terms of price needs to be verified by you independently. So the more houses that you can go through, and the more research you can do on prices in the area that are comparable to the property that you're looking to buy, the better prepared you will be when it comes time for you to put in an offer on a property that you've found, that you want to move into.
2) Verify all the info the agent gives you.
Quite often, there are concessions available for first home-buyers, and some of those are federal grants and some are state grants - so check in your state what's available to you. But be mindful - sometimes they are for new properties only, and not established properties.
3) Check for grants in your state.
Now, if you're a first homebuyer, chances are this is the biggest financial decision you've ever made. So it's important that you protect yourself in the lead up to purchasing. So if you've found a house or a townhouse that you really like, it's important that you get a building and pest inspection done on it, to make sure that you're not buying someone else's lemon. Equally, if you're buying an apartment, get a strata report ordered and have a look at the history of the body corporate - or if you're in another state that doesn't have that, look through the body corporate minutes yourself, to make sure there's no issues with the building which might form the reason why the seller is actually selling now. And if you do those things, you put yourself in a very strong position to make sure you're buying a good property that will last you a long time.
4) Get a building and pest inspection.
It's very exciting when it comes time to make an offer, but I want you to be aware that just because an offer has been accepted, it doesn't necessarily mean that the property is off the market. You've got to be very careful about being gazumped. So make sure that you get clarity from the agent as to what needs to happen to make that offer unconditional, and take the property off the market - and then you can celebrate.