How to Buy a House in Kyogle

Many people dream of buying their own home, but don’t necessarily know the best way to go about actually doing it.

Below are a few vital steps to consider before making one of the biggest decisions of your life

1. Can I Afford It?

Before getting your hopes up on that dream home, make sure your finances are in order. Most purchases require a minimum 10% deposit, plus stamp duty and legal fees, so speak to a trusted financial advisor, mortgage broker, or your bank to see how much you can realistically afford and how much you will be able to borrow. Things like credit card debt or irregular income/non-permanent work can impact your lending capacity; you may find you are unable to get a mortgage or need a larger deposit.

It is a good idea to get pre-approved for a loan before you get too serious about house hunting, and once you’ve found ‘The One’ and your offer is accepted, your lender will arrange unconditional finance. Note if the lender’s valuation doesn’t match what you want to borrow on the property, unconditional finance may be declined for that particular house. Don’t totally despair, as another lender may be willing to offer you a mortgage, sometimes with additional requirements such as mortgage insurance or a higher interest rates.

Some buyers who want to get their foot on the property ladder may find it is more realistic to rent a property where they want to live, and buy an investment property in a more affordable suburb. Others may find that continuing to rent makes the most sense for their finances and lifestyle, and don’t feel they need the security (and responsibility) of owning their own place.

However, it is important to really do your figures and find what is best for your own financial situation.

2. Know the Area

Buying a home is a big commitment, so make sure you know where you want to live!

If you are unfamiliar with the area you are considering, do your research. Get familiar with what your potential home town has to offer – as well as any downsides to the area. Existing and proposed infrastructure, employment opportunities, council restrictions, schools, community amenities and services, crime rate and overall lifestyle factors should all be considered.

Visit your proposed neighbourhood regularly and to see what it’s like during different times of day, days of the week, or weather conditions – some areas can be considerably noisier than others, or some may be more prone to flooding or bushfires (making insurance costs considerably higher).

Also consider aspects such as road conditions or public transport if you’ll need to commute – do a dummy run during your normal commute times to make sure you can handle the drive/ride/walk each day.

Check out some community groups to get a better idea of the town’s vibe, and try to talk to locals to get a better feel for the area and your specific neighbourhood.

The more you know about an area, the more sure you can be that you’ll be happy with your move!

3. Get Good Advice

Home buying can be overwhelming for anyone, but especially if you’re a first timer.

Finding an agent who really listens to your individual needs can help you find the right property at the right price. The clearer you are in your own head about what you want, the more likely an agent is to know if your wish list is reasonable for the area and your budget. However, compromise is an inevitable part of buying a home, so it can pay to be open-minded.

You’ll also need to get some solid legal advice on your side, so find a solicitor or conveyance you can trust. They’ll help you navigate the finer points of the contract and ensure the whole process can go smoothly.

A professional pest and building inspection can also ensure that the property you want won’t come with any nasty surprises.

4. Keep Emotions Out of It

When it comes to something as major and personal as a home, it’s only natural to get swayed by your feelings.

However, that character home you’ve always admired could be hiding a host of structural nightmares. Or that big, beautiful new home you’ve always dreamed of – but can’t comfortably afford – could be potentially ruinous to your financial stability. Or your dream property could escape your reach if the vendors change their minds or accept a better offer.

Don’t let your heart overpower your head. Get all the facts, make an educated decision, be patient, and then let yourself fall in love with that house.