Buying a new home can be a very stressful experience, especially if you don’t do the proper research. You can easily fall in love with a home when stalking the real estate pages, or visiting open homes. When you decide to move house, take on a renovation, or even refinance your current home, all of these decisions can be messy and painful if you aren’t sure where to start. My husband and I have done it many times. We’ve built 3 times, renovated twice and bought a couple of times. Each time we’ve decided to move on, I am the one who does all the research. Usually it’s a long process and one I don’t take lightly! Out come the spreadsheets and notepads. I like to cover every base and make sure the end result is going to be the best option for us financially.
Today I have put together a short checklist of things you might think about before buying your new home.
→ What price did it sell for previously? If it has jumped up in price dramatically you will want to know why? For example, did the owners make any improvements?
→ Find out what your yearly council rates will be and factor that in to your budget.
→ How long will settlement take? 30 days? Or longer? This is important to know so you can organise your living arrangements (also any extra loan/rent payments).
→ How much will the Stamp Duty be?
→ How much and when will the deposit be due? Communicate this with your bank.
→ Are you eligible for the First Home Owners Grant?
→ Have there been any obvious extensions or sheds added to the property? Have these been passed through council?
→ Check for any plumbing or electrical reports.
→ If it’s a unit, what are the strata levies and other fees (like gardening)?
→ Are there any recent building or pest inspections available for review? If not, consider getting these done yourself before making an offer.
→ What would the fees be to pay a solicitor or conveyancer eg. property searches, certificates?
→ Who does all the communicating of the sale? Will that be you or the solicitor?
Once you’ve gone through all of those things on the checklist you’ll probably also be thinking about your finances and how to make that work for you in the best way possible. Here’s a post I wrote on Mortgage Questions To Ask.