Buying Your New Home

Did you know the average australian homebuyer keeps a home for about 9 years? since this will be your home for the next decade or so, you want to be confident in your choice. Here are some house hunting tips to get you through the most expensive “shopping trip” of your life!

Make a list

Sit down and think about how you use your house. What do you love about your current home? what do you hate about it? how do you want to be able to use your new home? what are the priorities for your new home? what are you willing to compromise on?

Now, think about how you’ll use your home in the coming years. Are you expecting a new family member, or looking to start a family and worried about space? are the kids getting to an age where you just need more space, a media room or a retreat for the parents? are you an empty-nester who wants to streamline and downsize? mMaybe you just really want to enjoy the queensland lifestyle with a great outdoor entertaining area and a pool.

Start by making a list of what features you want in a home, such as the number of bedrooms, car parking spaces, block size, and then rank them in terms of priorities. Once you have your “must-haves” list, add a few more “nice-to-haves,” but don’t get too carried away that dream home might not actually exist, or if it does it might have a price tag to match.

By creating a wish list you will also inadvertently work out what you might compromise on in your new home; perhaps smaller bedroom size is okay if there’s a entertaining area. For some homebuyers, living in a particular neighbourhood takes precedence over all other priorities, but for others, the home itself matters more.

Knowing what you can and cannot compromise on will make the search that much easier and by sticking to your basic “wish” list, you will be sure to make the right decision and be happy with your purchase now and in the future.

Feel free to share this list with your real estate agent to help them find homes in your price range that meets your needs.

Location, location, location

It’s important to think of the constraints that each location may place on your lifestyle and the advantages each has to offer, before making the commitment to buy. Suburban lifestyles are flexible, offering children the opportunity to play outdoors and enjoy a neighbourhood environment. Urban areas offer greater social, culture, educational and career opportunities. Rural areas offer privacy, room to move and the ability to pursue hobbies on a larger scale, such as gardening, animals or that go-kart track you always wanted.

Ask around, especially if you’re thinking about moving to an area that is unfamiliar to you or if you live in an area with lots of different suburbs to choose from. Ask friends or family what they love and hate about where they currently live. Depending on what’s important to you, find out about schools, crime/safety, local amenities and traffic.

Get to know the market

Have a good look at property within your desired location and price range to get an accurate idea of what you can afford. Browse online listings in and around your budget. This will help set your expectations ahead of time so you know what kind of house you can get for your money. As an added bonus you may also be surprised what kind of things you discover about your tastes just from looking at online listings!

Open homes

Open homes are the most exciting part of the buying process, the part where you get to walk through somebody else’s house and imagine yourself living there. Try to look past the decor and imagine yourself in the home, how do you see yourself using the spaces? Walk through the property twice, it may seem silly, and you may not think you need to, but no matter how thoroughly you looked, you will notice so much more the second time around.

Keep an open mind

Look beyond ugly paint colours, carpeting, and furniture. Not everyone understands the importance of staging a home for sale, and some people just think their stuff is awesome. Remember it’s their home, not yours. Once it becomes yours, the dated furniture, and all their ugly stuff will be out of there.

While everyone prefers a move-in ready home, you can often get a better deal on a home that needs some cosmetic repairs. If you’re not afraid to open a can of paint or pull up some carpet, you’ll reap the rewards by having a blank canvas to create your own look and feel.

In the same respect it’s easy to be wowed by features in a home that you may never use. Everyone loves to look at marble countertops, spa baths and parent retreats, but make sure a home meets your practical needs before you start indulging your wants.

Keep an eye out for new listings

If you see a new listing that you’d like to go see, particularly if houses in your area and price range are selling very quickly, call or text your agent and ask to see it ASAP. There is also an email alert you can sign up for through your account that will notify you when a new house within your parameters comes on the market.

Emotion & logic in house hunting

Be sure to balance your emotion and your logic. You need both to buy a house. Too much of one or the other and you may end up with a house that doesn’t really work for you…or, on the other side of the spectrum, you may never ever buy a house and end up perpetually house hunting for eternity! it’s okay to take into consideration the warm fuzzy feeling you get when you walk into a house, just don’t let those warm fuzzies be the only reason you make an offer!

Not only should you feel emotionally satisfied by your choice, but you should also feel financially comfortable that you’re buying a home that you can afford and that you feel confident will hold onto its value or hopefully increase in value over the years. While no one can know for sure what will happen to housing values, if you make the choice to buy a home that meets your needs and priorities you’ll be happy to live in it for years to come.

Making an offer

Once you decide to make an offer on a property there are a few other things to consider… Decide up front on; how much you can offer as a deposit, your timeline (how long do you need to settle or do you need to be out of your current home on a set date), and lastly whether your offer is dependent on you selling your current house and if that is the case then you may need to start the process of preparing your home for sale. Feel free to have a chat with one of our agents about the process of selling and how we can help you sell your current home before you can buy that new one.

How McAllister Realty can help you

Our “on the market” page provides you with a comprehensive tool for perusing property right across hervey bay and the surrounding areas, giving you an understanding of what you can expect to get for your budget. It provides a full description & photographs of properties currently on the market.

Ready to start the process of selling your current home? we can help there too, just call our office and we will put you in touch with one of our experienced agents who can explain the process of selling and how McAllister Realty works with you to make selling a seamless transition.

Related services

Over the years we’ve built up relationships with a number of property related service providers, from lawyers and conveyancers to tradespeople, removalists and cleaners. Speak to our team for a recommendation.