In the past year or two, outside of the headlines being dominated by covid updates, crazy weather pattern and the devastation of war, Australia has been obsessed with the property market – more than ever.  

When covid first hit us there was panic about real estate prices crashing but quickly this was flipped on its head when we started to see home prices going up and up to dizzy heights. It now seems that the dust has settled, and it appears that home prices have levelled off, potentially dropping in some areas.  So maybe it’s a good time to consider buying either a new place to call home or even getting into the property mark for the first time.

The first step is working out where you want to live, or invest, based on all your preferences and requirements, and of course what your finances will permit. With the general location and budget determined, for many it is time to check out listings on the  various property apps, pick the homes that match your search, and start pounding the pavement and attending open for inspections.  

We suggest that before you inspect anything you aim to become expert on every property sold, and for sale, in the market of your focus.  The more you know about every nuance in the property market the better you will be placed to really determine property values yourself. 

Let’s say that you’re looking for a home with a minimum of four bedrooms, two bathrooms and a two-car garage.  Being clear about this is a good place to start but there’s so much more detail that will impact the value and potential sale price of properties on your radar.  There are things like, proximity to schools, public transport, flat walking access to shops, nearby developments, views and aspects and list goes on.  

The real estate agent has a job to do and that is to achieve the best sales price for the vendor selling the home.  They can help you buy it, but they don’t represent you in the buying process, they represent the seller. Don’t kid yourself into thinking that they are there to help you get the best deal at purchase.

If you are not confident or are too time pressured to do the full in-depth research required to buy your home, consider a buyers’ agent.  There will be a cost in utilising the services of a buyers’ agent but they represent you, which could pay off in the long run. A buyers agent will generally know the market inside out, will have a very good handle on ascertaining the true value of individual properties, the property conditions reports,  and often have access to properties coming on to the market ahead of time. Check out our podcast with Nicole Jacobs to learn more about buyers agents – Reality Reno with Mitch and Mark available on Spotify or iTunes.

Whether you go it alone or engage professional help when searching for the property just right for you, the better equipped and informed you are, the more likely you will get the right deal.  The reality for most of us is a home is our biggest investment, it’s something we will be paying off for an awful lot of years into the future.  

If we put the effort into the search for our home and get it right, it’s not just about enjoying our time there, it can likely change our financial futures and set us up for retirement.  No pressure…. 

Happy house hunting!!

June 15, 2022 — Mark McKie

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